Police are appealing for witnesses after an attempted robbery in a village in north Wiltshire where the offender tried to steal a dog.
It happened at around 10.40pm on Sunday 25 April when the victim, a man in his 40s, was walking his dog on Sopworth Road, in Luckington.
A silver Ford Transit van pulled up alongside him and asked if his dog was for sale. When the victim declined, a man got out of the van and punched him to the face.
Thankfully, the victim managed to run away, taking the dog with him. However, he did suffer bruising and swelling to his eye.
The suspect is described as a white man, around 40 years old, wearing a black jacket, a black woolly hat and a black facemask. He spoke with an Irish accent.
PC Mike Croxford, from the Chippenham Area Community Policing Team, said: “We know there is a lot of community concern around dog thefts and I want to reassure the public that we are carrying out detailed enquiries.
“Wiltshire Police has recently appointed designated officers and staff to assist with incidents of dog thefts, so they will be providing support for this investigation and carrying out additional intelligence work.
“I am urging anyone with information, including anyone who may recognise the description of the suspect or the van, to come forward.”
If you can help please call PC Croxford on 101, quoting crime reference 54210039033. Alternatively you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.