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policetapeA 62-year-old woman has this week spoken out after finding herself in a scary situation when an unknown man approached her in an alleyway and demanded money.

The unnamed woman was approached on a dark footpath between Robin Hood Street and the shops at Royal Exchange on the Pan Estate last Friday just before 19:45 – She was pushed into a fence by a man who demanded that she hand over money and her mobile phone.

The suspect was spooked when the victim’s dog ran towards him.

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Speaking about the incident, the victim has said:

“I’ve been walking there for seven years and it’s a place I’ve never really felt uneasy because it’s lit to a certain extent.

“The guy pushed me on the shoulder and shoved me into the fence and asked me if I had money and I said no. He then asked if I had my phone and I said no and called my dog over. He then ran off in the direction of Pan Stores.

“It’s made me a lot more aware and it’s unnerved me. I was worried about being followed home and I now feel very vulnerable.”

The suspect has been described as white, in his late 20s and is said to be around 5ft 6″ tall, of medium build and wearing a dark hooded top and a dark scarf covering half of his face. The victim has said that he also smelt of tobacco.

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Investigating Officer, DC Vici Hayward of Newport CID said:

“Although this type of incident is rare, we are treating this matter very seriously. The victim was not injured but she was left very shaken and scared.

“Members of the public should be able to walk in their community without fearing for their safety.

“I would urge anyone who may have seen someone matching this description in that area, or who may have been approached by this man themselves, or someone matching his description to get in touch.

“We recommend people use well-lit and used routes instead of the more secluded footpaths during hours of darkness and if that isn’t possible, try not to walk alone.”

Anyone with information can contact DC Vici Hayward of Newport CID by phoning 101. Information can be given anonymously by phoning the independent Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.

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