POLICE in Gravesend are hunting a suspect in a brutal unprovoked assault which left the victim lying unconscious in a pool of blood.

CCTV images have been released of a man officers want to speak to after a man in his 40s was allegedly punched without warning in West Street.

He had been leaving a party with a friend to go to his car when he saw a man talking to a woman outside a pub.

He crossed paths with the man who then hit the victim in the face before reportedly chasing away the victim’s friend.

He then returned, lifted the victim off his feet and hurled him into some nearby railings before walking off down West Street towards Asda.

The attack left the man with a fractured eye socket, a displaced cheekbone and lacerations needing a total of 26 stitches. 

The victim, who does not wish to be named, said: “I now have to force myself to do things, get out and about and move on with my life because I am determined that this attack will not beat me.

“I am not a small man but the man who attacked me was able to pick me up as though it was nothing.

“He needs to be caught so nobody else has to suffer in this way.”

The suspect is described as a heavyset white man with a bald head who was wearing a black bomber jacket with furry sleeves and dark blue jeans.

He estimated to be around 6ft tall and is wanted on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm at just after midnight on December 15.

Investigating officer, DC Hannah Gibbs of Kent Police, said: “This was an unprovoked and incredibly violent assault that left the victim unconscious and lying in a pool of his own blood.

“Kent Police has a zero tolerance policy towards incidents and behaviour such as this and I'd urge anybody with information or anybody who recognises this man to contact me on 01474 366086, quoting crime reference XY/40497/13.

“If you'd prefer to remain anonymous, call Kent Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.”