A 12-year-old boy heading to the shop on a break from school was reportedly left spouting blood after he was "punched in the face" by an adult man in a shocking assault.
The schoolboy was apparently smacked with a fist by an "aggressive and swearing" attacker in the Kingswood area of Tallaght, Dublin, just after 10am on Thursday morning.
The man was allegedly irate about maintaining social distancing, and launched an unprovoked assault on the youngster outside a shop.
Witnesses say his nose was "pumping blood" and his "eyes all bloodshot" after the alleged attack, which Gardai are now investigating and hunting for the man involved.
A source says the unprovoked attack kicked off when the child refused to move out of the way for the adult.
"A 12-year-old boy was punched in the face today by a grown man at the shops," they told Dublin Live.
"The man approached them calling him a c*** and told him to move along because of social distancing.
"He then pushed him into the shop by the neck and punched him."
A video of the moments following the sickening attack has been circulating online.
The source added: "The poor child's nose was pumping blood and his eyes were bloodshot.
"He was just going to get some rolls in the shop and was brutally assaulted.
"The man could clearly see that the boy was young and in his school uniform but still hit him."
A Garda spokesman confirmed the shocking incident and that officers are investigating.
He said: "Gardaí are investigating an alleged assault at Kingswood, Tallaght on 3 September at approximately 10.30am where a male youth was assaulted."
He added: "They suffered non-life threatening injuries.
"No arrests have been made and investigations are ongoing."