An Austrian tourist was repeatedly punched in the face after she rejected the advances of a man who followed her from a London Tube station, leaving her with injuries so severe she needed surgery.
The 60-year-old was attacked by a man in his late 20s after he approached her outside Warwick Avenue station in west London.
The Metropolitan Police said the victim “politely” rejected his attempts to “chat her up” but the man followed her as she walked along Warwick Avenue towards Formosa Street, near Paddington, at around 8pm on Friday March 10.
He grabbed her from behind and repeatedly struck her in the face, leaving her needing surgery on her injuries. She was taken to a London hospital after a passer-by found her.
The victim, who does not want to be named, has released a picture of her injuries as part of a police appeal for information.
Her attacker is described as a white man, aged around 25 to 27, around 5ft 8in tall, with short brown hair and brown eyes. He was wearing light-coloured trousers, a brown jacket and a black baseball cap, the Press Association reported.
Detective Constable Mike Reilly, the investigating officer from Westminster CID, said: “This was a vicious, unprovoked attack that has left the victim very shaken. Her injuries are so severe that she requires surgery.
“Warwick Avenue is a busy area, especially at 8pm on a Friday evening. Someone must have seen something and I’d appeal for anyone with information to come forward as soon as possible so we can bring the perpetrator to justice.”
Any witnesses or anyone with information is asked to contact Westminster CID via 020 7321 8260 or @MetCC.
Information can also be reported anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.