A HOODED attacker brandishing a machete attempted to rob a convenience shop.

The suspect entered The Drive Store in Church Road, Hove late last night.

He demanded cash but was refused, then attacked one of the men inside.

A victim suffered a serious injury to his hand and was rushed to the Royal Sussex County Hospital.

The suspect left empty-handed and ran off up The Drive in Hove.

This morning police sealed off the shop while forensics experts in protective overalls moved in.

The Argus:

Pictures show police at the scene - Scroll down for video

Three scene of crime investigators in full protective gear were seen inside the shop, and were seen looking behind the till.

An area outside the shop was taped off while they carried out their inquiry.

The suspect is a man of Middle Eastern appearance, age between 21 and 27, dressed in all black with a black hooded top with the hood up, police said.

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Two uniformed officers stood guard outside the store today as the force appealed for witnesses.

“This is believed to be an isolated incident, and the public can expect a heightened police presence in the area in the meantime as enquiries continue,” the force said.

Customers were turned away from the shop, which remains closed after the incident at about 10.30pm.

One resident said: “It has happened next door to the Nayeb restaurant. I saw two people in hazardous suits from two separate vans arriving.

“There was also one police car there.”

Businesses neighbouring the shop remain open.

The Argus:

Crime scene investigators have been seen inside the shop

H’s Barber Shop said: “We arrived for work this morning and saw the police here. We don’t know what has happened, but we are still open as normal.”

The force said: “We are appealing for witnesses after a man was seriously injured during an attempted robbery at a shop in Hove.

“At about 10.30pm on Saturday, September 19, a man is reported to have entered The Drive Store, in Church Road, and demanded cash.

The Argus:

“After being refused, he allegedly produced a machete and attacked one of the occupants in the shop, who was taken to hospital with a serious hand injury.

“The suspect left the scene emptied handed, and is believed to have made off north up The Drive.

“He is described as a Middle Eastern man aged between 21 and 27, dressed all in black, and wore a hooded top with the hood up.

The Argus:

“There was a lot of foot traffic in the area at the time, and police are urging anyone who witnessed the incident or saw anything suspicious in the area around that time – or anyone with any relevant dash cam or CCTV – to come forward.”

Anyone with information can report it to Sussex Police online or call 101 and quote 1747  of 19/09.

You can report it online or call 101, quoting serial 1747 of 19/09.

Alternatively call charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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