POLICE are seeking the public’s help to identify a man, apparently armed with a handgun, who walked into a Redditch store.

It is believed the man intended to carry out a robbery when he went into Church Hill North News in Parkfield Close. However he quickly left when he realised he had been spotted by the owner who had walked out from the back of the store after seeing him acting suspiciously outside on CCTV.

When the CCTV footage was reviewed it could be seen that the man was holding what appeared to be a gun in one hand and a carrier bag in the other.

An investigation was launched following the incident which happened at 9pm on Friday, September 14, but police have been unable to identify the man and have now released an image in the hope that someone may recognise him.

Detective Sergeant Gary Mole of Redditch CID said: "We believe this man went into the store with the intention of robbing it. He was armed with what appeared to be handgun although we obviously don't know if it was real or not. Fortunately he was spotted as he walked in, quickly changed his mind and left.

"It's vital we trace him and we are now asking people to study the CCTV image and tell us if they know who he is or think they recognise him.

“Although his features are obscured by his hood and a covering across the lower part of his face, his clothing and general appearance are quite distinctive, so we are hopeful someone will come forward with a name."

Anyone who can help the police investigation is urged to contact Det Sgt Mole at Redditch CID on the non-emergency number 101 as soon as possible or details can be passed on anonymously via the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.