A 79-YEAR-OLD woman was left with a fractured eye socket after being grabbed from behind and robbed.

The Gateshead pensioner was pulled to the ground by someone, who stole her bag before making off.

It happened in the Claremont North Avenue area shortly after 9.30pm on Tuesday, May 7.

The woman was left with serious facial injuries, including a fractured eye socket.

Police are appealing for anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area to come forward.

Detective Constable Joanne Newton, of Northumbria Police, said: “This is a despicable and cowardly crime against an elderly member of our community.

“The victim was going about her everyday business when we believe she was approached by an offender and pulled to the ground.

“The impact of her heavy fall resulted in her sustaining significant facial injuries, and the perpetrator then made off with her handbag."

Anyone with information is asked to contact 101 quoting reference 1145 070519.