POLICE are appealing for information after a man was grabbed by throat in an attempted robbery in Westcliff.

The 18-year-old victim was near Westcliff train station when another man approached him and asked for directions. 

He was then threatened by the man who demanded he hand over his phone. 

Detective Constable Tim Keep, leading the investigation, said: “The victim was approached in a side road, and was asked for directions towards the station. The victim walked with the man to the station.

"Once outside the main entrance, the victim was grabbed by his throat, and his attacker demanded he hand over his mobile phone.

“Luckily, the victim managed to break away from the suspect, who ran away from the station.”

Officers have now released a picture taken from CCTV footage of the suspect, who is believed to be local, and are asking the public to get in touch if they can identify him.

Anyone with information is asked to contact British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40 quoting reference LNA/B5 of 27/02/2014 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.