A man is trying to catch two “thugs” dressed as pink fairies who beat his son in a homophobic attack on Halloween.
The suspects, wearing pink tutus, verbally abused Robbie Kingsford and his friend as they walked near KFC in Surbiton, south-west London.
They kept walking but as they slowed at a nearby zebra crossing, the men attacked them, police said.
Brian Kingsford, Robbie’s father, has set up a Facebook group appealing for witnesses to come forward over the assault.
He wrote: “These thugs need to be caught. If you know who these two people were and have any conscience, please report them to the police as next time they may just kill someone.”
Robbie, who was shown in a photo from hospital with a bloody, bruised and swollen face, thanked the almost 500 members of the group for sending tip-offs and spreading the appeal.
The 21-year-old wrote: “The officer I am dealing with reckons we may have a lot there now and will make it easier to catch the people who did this to me.
“Thank you again and I hope one day I can return the favour and help you all somehow.”
A spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police said Robbie and his unnamed friend were walking along Victoria Road in Surbiton at about 1.20am on Saturday when they were subjected to homophobic abuse by a man standing outside the YMCA.
When they reached the zebra crossing, the abusive man and a friend approached them and Robbie’s 18-year-old friend was punched.
Robbie intervened to protect him and the suspects then turned on him, kicking and stamping on him after he fell to the ground.
The attack only stopped when passers-by intervened and the suspects ran off.
Robbie was taken to hospital with a head injury and has since been discharged. His friend was treated for minor facial injuries.
Trainee Detective Constable Ann-Marie Hodgkiss said: “This was a violent and unprovoked (homophobic) hate crime and I am appealing for anyone with any information about the incident to contact me.
"The two suspects were distinctively dressed, probably due to Halloween, and I would urge anyone who recognises their description and who may know who they are to contact me and help us trace them."
Police described the first suspect as a white man, in his late 20s with short fair hair and short with a muscular build.
The second suspect was also a white man in his late 20s, with short brown hair. Both men were wearing pink tutus.
No arrests have been made and the investigation continues.
Anyone with information is asked to call Kingston Police on 0208 721 5858 or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.