A man has been taken to hospital after being shot in both knees in Londonderry.
The shooting happened in the Cromore Gardens area in Creggan on Friday night.
PSNI Det Insp Bob Blemmings said the man was due to have surgery and that the incident was perpetrated by "mindless thugs".
He added that the attack was "abhorrent".
"The recklessness shown by those involved in carrying out this attack should be condemned. The harm has to end," he said.
"The excitement and innocence of young children has been violated by those who carried out this shooting.
"Instead of Christmas bells ringing in their ears, they have the sound of gun shots. No child should ever have to live like this."
Kevin Campbell, a Sinn Féin councillor in the area, called the attack "diabolical."
"Children are anticipating the arrival of Santa and here we have people dishing out their own form of corrupt justice," he said.
"The people who carried out this attack have shown total and utter disregard towards the community."
The police have appealed for information.