POLICE have dropped their investigation into a shocking act of road rage that caused a terrified woman to flee for her life.

A bat-wielding attacker remains at large almost four months after smashing up the car of a motorist who had stopped in front of him at temporary traffic lights on a dark January morning.

The victim had been travelling along the foggy A171 moors road close to Scaling Dam, near Whitby, when she stopped at red lights at around 7.10am.

The motorist behind her – believed to have been driving a 4x4 – then crashed into the back of her car, pulled up alongside her and launched a terrifying attack.

Wielding a “thin rubber bat with a distinctive white tip”, he climbed out of his car and approached her window, screaming and swearing as he smashed her windscreen and damaged other parts of the car with his weapon.

Fearing for her life, the woman sped through a red light to escape and was left picking glass out of her skin hours later.

Cleveland Police have now confirmed that their investigation into the incident has been closed, pending further information coming to light.

The victim, a woman in her 50s, said that the case was closed after she found herself unable to be absolutely certain that her attacker was in an identity parade.

Police carried out lengthy enquiries, acquired CCTV footage and made repeated public appeals for information but say they had “no alternative” but to close the case.

The woman involved praised officers for keeping her updated and for their attempts to track down her assailant.

She said that the unprovoked attack has had a dramatic impact on her life and left her fearing that the man would go on to target others – or return to attack her again.

She added: “I'm disappointed that this man is still out there and could do this to someone else but I couldn’t be unfair to anybody and I wasn’t 100 per cent sure it was him in the identity parade – you have to do these things right.

“The police were brilliant, they kept me informed all along and they’re just as disappointed as I am.

“If I could say anything to that man it would be to ask him to stop and consider what he has done to other human beings."

The woman urged members of the public to always be prepared when travelling, saying she now travelled with her phone always on and had cameras installed in her car.

Anyone with information about the incident, which happened on A171 westbound, just past the Scaling Dam reservoir on Thursday, January 11, contact police on non-emergency number 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.