A MASKED robber sprayed a substance into a shop worker's face before fleeing with a till drawer and its contents.

Detectives have appealed for help to trace the raider, who struck at Boscombe Gardens Food Centre in Christchurch Road at around 9.15pm on Saturday November 9.

Officers were told the robber had fled in the direction of Drummond Road.

A search of the area was carried out and the till drawer and a canister of what is believed to be CS spray were found in Drummond Road.

The cashier was checked over by the ambulance service, but did not require hospital treatment.

The offender is described as white and was wearing a black North Face jacket with green around the chest and shoulders, a green hooded top, black Adidas tracksuit bottoms and black trainers with yellow soles.

He was also wearing camouflage gloves, a dark-coloured beanie hat with a white mark on the left side and a black snood pulled up over his mouth and nose.

Detective Constable Neil Causebrook, of Bournemouth CID, said: “This must have been a very frightening ordeal for the cashier and we are carrying out a number of enquiries to identify the man responsible for this robbery.

“I would urge anyone who witnessed any suspicious activity in the area or who has any information that can assist our investigation to please contact us.”

Information to Dorset Police on 101, quoting occurrence number 55190177286, or the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, via email 101@dorset.pnn.police.uk or by calling 101, quoting occurrence number 55190177286. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org.

CS gas, also known as tear gas, is sometimes used as a riot control agent. It causes irritation to the eyes, nose, mouth, and lungs. It can take around 30 seconds for the effect to kick in, with symptoms including a burning sensation in the eyes, breathing problems, chest pain, excessive saliva and skin irritation.