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A graphic video released by police yesterday showed a member of the group pick up some alcohol and try to walk out of the Thirsty Liquor store on Ti Rakau Drive in Pakuranga on Saturday without paying.
As the employee approached the teenager, another man punched the worker from the side and others joined in.
The employee was knocked to the ground before being hit on the head with a bottle of spirits -- so hard the bottle shattered. One of the attackers then continued to kick the employee several times in the head.
The four teenagers then left the store, taking with them some beer and a few bottles of spirits.
Counties Manukau Police released a statement this morning saying the offenders had been identified thanks to calls from the public and were in the process of being located.
The suspects were aged 14?16 and would be subject to Youth Court proceedings.
The employee yesterday told the NZ Herald he had no chance to react at first as he was king-hit from behind. As he was repeatedly kicked in the head and body, he was eventually knocked out.
"After three minutes, I woke up. I felt so dizzy I couldn't even remember the police phone number.
"I came back and luckily Google was opened up on my [computer]. I typed in 'police' and 111 came up and then I rang them."
He spent a day in hospital.