A 21-YEAR-OLD man brutally bashed after attending a birthday party in Naenae has died overnight.
Jardin Daniel Whanga-Elliott was chased by a group down a street and assaulted in the early hours of Sunday.
He was found unconscious about 3.30am near Seddon Street and rushed to Wellington Hospital with severe head injuries.
Police believe about 30 people were at the 21st and are appealing for witnesses to the attack or those that attended the party to come forward.
Talosage Terry David Moreli has been remanded in custody after appearing in the Hutt Valley District Court charged with assaulting the man and a separate charge of assaulting another man.
Police were now treating the death as a homicide inquiry and were working to piece together what happened.
Police were appealing for any witnesses to the attack or anyone who may have attended the party on Saturday night to come forward.
A grieving family member has expressed his outrage over losing Mr Whanga-Elliott at what should have been a peaceful family celebration.
The relative, who posted a photo of Mr Whanga-Elliott on life support, asked what happened to warrant the 21-year-old being attacked after being specially invited to join the party.
"Get your  boy to come around, invite [Mr Whanga-Elliott] over to your boy's 21st so you could take [his] life."
The man said those who once called themselves family could "kiss all that goodbye".
He described the pain of Mr Whanga-Elliott's passing as ripping the biggest hole in his chest.
"This s*** is gonna take me a long time to heal from this and in all honesty I'm never gonna forgive you  for taking [Mr Whanga-Elliott] from me ever."
- NZ Herald