Man had acid thrown in face for refusing to give up dog to robbers

A 64-year-old man had acid thrown in his face after refusing to hand over his 10-month old puppy to two robbers.

Michael, who has asked not be identified in fear of further attacks, has been left with burns to his neck, chest, arm and leg following the attack in Boughton Monchelsea, Kent, last Sunday.

Detective Sergeant Jemma Croppe said: ‘We are urging dog walkers in the area to be vigilant and are advising them to keep dogs on leads.’

Alfie, a German Shorthaired Pointer, suffered burns when he and his owner Michael had acid thrown at them. His owner Michael, who does not want to be fully identified for fear of reprisals, was taken to Tunbridge Wells Hospital after being helped by medics and a neighbour to wash off the chemical spray.
Michael was attacked by two robbers who tried to steal his puppy Alfie (Picture: JustGiving)

A police spokesman said the victim was walking along a footpath between 7.30am and 8.30am when two men tried to steal his dog Alfie, a German shorthaired pointer believed to be worth around £3,000.

When Michael challenged them, he and the dog were sprayed with a noxious substance by one of the men.

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He was rushed to Tunbridge Wells Hospital and the dog was taken to a vet with burns to his back.

Michael’s wife Gabrielle, 66, was so shocked by the incident that she suffered a heart attack.

Detectives have appealed for information and released a computer generated image of one of the male suspects.

Kent Detective Constable Celia King said: ‘We would like to speak to the person shown in the computer generated image.

‘I would urge anybody who recognises the man or anyone with information about the incident to call the appeal line.’

Detectives have released this image of an attempted robber who tried to steal a man's dog - then hurled suspected acid in the victim's face. See National News story NNACID; The suspects, believed to be two men, threw the noxious substance over the victim when he refused to hand over his pet. Police launched an appeal earlier this week and they have now shared an efit image of one of the attackers. Detective Constable Celia King said: "We would like to speak to the person shown in the computer generated image.
Kent Police have released a data generated image of one of the robbers (Picture: SWNS)

A police spokesman said: ‘One of the men is described as being white, in his mid 40s, 5ft 11in tall, of large build and with short dark hair. He was wearing a white t-shirt and jeans.

‘The second man is described as being white, in his 30s, 6ft tall, of slim build and with dark hair.’

In the initial appeal police warned other dog walkers to be ‘vigilant’.

Sue Rose, from the German Shorthaired Pointer Society, has raised almost £2,675 after setting up a fundraising page for Michael, Gabrielle and Alfie.

She wrote: ‘Both Michael and Alfie are receiving ongoing treatment which will leave Michael incapacitated for the foreseeable future.

‘As a result of the stress Gabrielle has suffered a small heart attack and is undergoing cardiac tests and decisions regarding further treatment.

‘This has left Michael, Gabrielle and Alfie traumatised following the attack.’

If you can help, please call Kent Police on 01622 604100, quoting reference YY/29857/18.