A MAN remains critically ill in hospital today after suffering serious head injuries in an early morning street brawl.
The 21-year-old had been enjoying a night out with friends in Sunderland city centre when he was assaulted outside a takeaway.
The victim is understood to have suffered a broken jaw, as well as a suspected bleed to the brain in the incident.
Police were called to Holmeside, close to the Red Chilli takeaway, at 5.10am yesterday morning after reports of fighting in the area.
The man was discovered injured and taken to a Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary where he was today described as being in a “stable but critical” condition.
Detectives leading the investigation are still looking for the attacker and have appealed for people in the area at the time to come forward with information.
Police cordoned off a section of the street as investigations into the assault were carried out with neighbouring businesses. The area remained closed off throughout yesterday.
Hayley Maddison, 23, who works at the nearby Subway store, said: “The first I knew about it was when I came into work at around 9am on Sunday, there was a police officer outside the takeaway but we didn’t know what had happened.
“Then at about 10am four or five more police officers came and taped off a larger section of the street until about 12.30pm.
“We close at about 3am and never really get any trouble, however, I’m not surprised it has happened in the street.”
Police believe there were a number of people in the area at the time and will have witnessed the assault.
DCI Colin Green said: “We would urge anyone who was in Holmeside at around 5am on Sunday morning to get in contact and help with our inquiries. No matter how small the information is, it all helps to build a picture of what has happened.
•Two men, aged 21 and 23, were arrested in the early hours of yesterday morning in relation to a separate assault in the Holmeside area. They have since been released.
Anyone with information is asked to call Northumbria Police on 03456 043 043, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.