POLICE have charged five people who allegedly went on a rock-throwing spree in a stolen car near Armidale in northern NSW.
The spree allegedly left a man in a critical condition in hospital.
Police said a 29-year-old driver was knocked out when he was struck in the head by a rock that came through his windscreen on Guyra-Ebor Road near Armidale yesterday afternoon.
His father was in the passenger seat and managed to stop the car.
The man was taken to Armidale Hospital before being airlifted to John Hunter Hospital, for emergency treatment, where he remains in a critical condition.
Police had earlier chased the alleged rock-throwers in a stolen Commodore along the New England Highway after the car refused to stop.
But the pursuit was abandoned after one of the occupants threw a rock at the police vehicle.
The stolen car then continued along the highway before turning onto Guyra-Ebor Road and shortly after, a passenger was seen chucking rocks at oncoming traffic, police say.
One of these rocks struck the 29-year-old man.
"Inquiries by police have revealed a truck and two other cars were allegedly hit by rocks thrown from the stolen car," police said in a statement.
The five occupants of the stolen vehicle, four males in their twenties and a 19-year-old female, have all been charged over the incident.
Bail was refused for all and they will appear at the Armidale Local Court today.