A GANG of thugs calling themselves “12 Block” attacked a 14-year-old in a public park threatening to stab and kill him during a robbery.

The victim, who feared for his life, was walking along with his girlfriend in Priory Park, Southend when he was set upon by the gang including at least one with a knife.

The gang tried to drag him into a ditch but Fred Oteng, 46, from Southend, managed to save him after he got a call from his daughter.

He said: “I rushed straight down there, I thought the gang were going to be about 18, so I took a big piece of timber with me just in case I needed to protect myself.

“I went to confront these boys, but when I got there, I realised they were only 15.

“One of them had a knife and was pacing up and down at the back of the group.

“They were not backing down, the eight of them threatened to stab my daughter’s friend.”

The boys said they were going to drag the boy away and “leave his body in the brook”.

Mr Oteng added: “The boy they attacked is absolutely lovely.

“He said that he thought he was going to die. How can a young boy be in a position where he has to think that?

“If the park was not busy at the time, I think they would have had no problem stabbing him there and then.”

A spokesman for Essex Police, said: “We are investigating an assault in the area of Prittlewell Chase and Fairfax Drive, Westcliff, which took place at around 5.30pm on Saturday, August 25.

“It was reported the victim, a 14-year-old boy, had been punched and kicked and then had a computer console controller, charger and money stolen.

“Around an hour later a man in his thirties was threatened with a knife.”

Mr Oteng added: “This is an incredibly serious incident and it makes me extremely worried.

“This area is more and more becoming like a London borough. There is more danger in this town all the time.

“For me to say that is not good.”

If you have any information about the incident please call Essex Police on 101 quoting the incident number 1075 of 25/08.

Alternatively you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or report it online at Crimestoppers.