Austrian woman punched in face by stranger outside London tube station

Chris Johnston
The woman agreed to the release of an image showing her injuries but did not want to be named. Photograph: Metropolitan Police/PA

Police have appealed for witnesses to come forward after a tourist in London was repeatedly punched in the face by a man who followed her from a tube station.

The 60-year-old, who was visiting from Austria, agreed to an image showing her injuries being released by the Metropolitan police as part of its appeal for information, but did not want to be named.

The woman was attacked by a man in his mid-20s at about 8pm on 10 March after he approached her outside Warwick Avenue station in north-west London.

The Met 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. The suspect grabbed her from behind and repeatedly struck her in the face.

A passerby found her shortly after the attack but was not a witness. The woman was taken to hospital with substantial facial injuries that police said amounted to grievous bodily harm. She has been discharged from hospital but will require further surgery.

The attacker is described as a white man, aged 25 to 27, about 5ft 8in (173cm) tall, with short brown hair and brown eyes. He was wearing light-coloured trousers, a brown jacket and a black baseball cap.

Detectives have conducted inquiries in the area and are appealing for anyone with information about the attack to come forward. DC 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. 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.”

Witnesses or anyone with information is asked to contact Westminster CID on 020 7321 8260 or, anonymously, to contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or