Youths used camera phones to take pictures of a young boy who impaled himself on his bicycle in Birmingham, hampering the work of firefighters.
The boy was hurt outside Burbury Park
It happened in Wheeler Street in the Lozells area on Monday night as nine-year-old Demitrious Briscoe was being comforted by his mother.
West Midlands Fire Service spokesman Bill Gough said between 10 and 15 youths gathered to take pictures.
He added that police were called to set up a cordon to allow them to work.
Mr Gough said: "These people were actually taking photographs of this youngster in these unfortunate circumstances using their mobile phones.
"They were getting very close to him to take their photographs and it must have been really scary for the boy, who was obviously in great pain."
He added that firefighters appealed to the group to let them get on with their work, but some members made comments along the lines that they "had been there first".
Police were then summoned to set up a cordon around the boy, giving firefighters and paramedics the space to attend to him.
"We appealed to the people to move back and put the cameras away, but they simply weren't having any of it so we sent for the police," Mr Gough added.
"It was pretty ghoulish and it appears to be a by-product of 'happy slapping'."
He now fears the images taken will be exchanged by youngsters throughout the UK.