POLICE are hunting a callous robber who assaulted a shop worker during a raid by spraying them in the face with a can of aerosol.
The thug burst into the Co-op food store on Ambleside Drive, in Worcester, at around 7.40pm on Sunday.
He then attacked a worker behind the till by spraying him in the face with the aerosol before fleeing with a quantity of cash and cigarettes.
Police say the injured worker was in a state of shock after the attack but did not require hospital treatment.
Detective Sergeant Breay, of West Mercia Police, said: ‘We believe this to be an isolated incident and not linked to any other offences.
‘The substance sprayed appears to have had no lasting effects although the member of staff was left shaken by the incident.’
A fire crew from Worcester was sent to the scene to help decontaminate the shop and police have now released pictures of the suspect in a bid to track him down.
A spokesman for The Midcounties Co-operative said: ‘An incident took place at The Lakes store on Sunday December 23. We are assisting the police with their investigations.’
Mayu Mithi, aged 33, owner of nearby Ambleside News, said: ‘There’s a fear other shops will be targeted.
‘I’d like to see more police for our safety. I feel kind of scared.
‘We don’t want to stay open too late because we feel something might happen.
‘We close at around 8pm at the moment, even though we can stay open until 10pm.’
Anyone with information about the robbery can ring West Mercia Police on 101, quoting incident number 561S of 23 December.
Alternatively, witnesses can anonymously call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.