SHE thought her son would be safe on the 200m walk to his school bus.
But, a mental health patient, believed to be under the influence of drugs, ruined that.
The man allegedly grabbed the boy, 15, on the arm, punched him to the ribs and then tried to drag him into a nearby alley.
The boy, fearing for his safety, broke free from his attacker's grasp and ran as quickly as he could to the nearest person - Lara Armstrong, who works at Garry Saunders Real Estate in Rockhampton.
Police are investigating a complaint that the boy was attacked at random on Denham St as he walked to his bus stop about 7.30am, Monday.
The boy, who cannot be identified by law, suffered bruising and internal injuries.
He is still understandably shaken; his mother understandably worried.
She said shortly after she got home from picking up her son from the real estate office, police told her they had picked up the alleged offender.
This person suffers serious mental health issues and is believed to have been under the influence of drugs.
"This was an attack by a grown adult man," the mum said.
"It was a random attack and it has really freaked us out.
"This could have been a lot worse."
The family moved to Kent St in July.
They're currently working out what they will do to keep their son safe in the future.
He may have to board at his school on the Capricorn Coast.
The boy's parents agonised over whether to make a complaint.
They understand a prosecution will likely involve a lengthy process that may not result in a conviction as there were no other witnesses.
But they don't want to see something like this happen to their son again, or anyone else's child.
Rockhampton police said a complaint had been made and an investigation was under way.
The Bulletin understands the alleged offender has been getting medical treatment for his condition, but the mum is worried he is back on the streets.
The police spokesman said it was not the police's role to talk anyone out of making a complaint.
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