A would-be robber attacked a pensioner in Hove but was thwarted by the victim’s 65-year-old wife.
The attacker approached his 67-year-old victim from behind in Haddington Street, Hove.
The attempted robbery took place at about 5.20pm on Saturday.
The attacker grabbed the pensioner round the waist and demanded money before pushing him to the ground and punching him in the chest.
The victim’s wife tried to pull the attacker off her husband and shouted for help.
Detective Sergeant Steve French, of Sussex Police, said: “This was extremely distressing for the couple.
“I’m keen to speak to anyone with information that could help support this investigation.”
Police are conducting house-to-house inquiries and CCTV footage is being reviewed.
The suspect is described as mixed race, in his early 30s, of average build and height, clean shaven and wearing a black woollen hat, jeans and a dark top.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Sussex Police on 0845 6070999 or to call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.