A POLICE investigation has been launched into an assault which saw a man spit at a Tesco employee after he was refused alcohol.

A man entered Tesco Express in Holdenhurst Road, Bournemouth, and went to browse the wines and spirits section.

At this point, the victim – a member of staff at the store – noticed that he appeared to be intoxicated.

The victim notified staff at the checkout and, when the man went to pay for his items, they informed him that he was unable to purchase any alcohol, in line with company policy.

The man then became verbally abusive and was ushered out of the store by the victim and a security guard. The offender then turned around and spat in the direction of the victim before walking off along Holdenhurst Road. His saliva landed on the victim’s shoe.

Officers investigating the assault, which took place at around 7.15pm on Thursday, Aprul 23, have issued CCTV images of a man they would like to speak to.

PC Robert Cleary, of Bournemouth police, said: “Spitting at people who are doing their job is particularly unpleasant during the current public health situation.

"We have made efforts to identify the offender but these have so far been unsuccessful.

“As part of my enquiries I have now obtained CCTV images of a man I would like to speak to.

“If you recognise him from the image, please get in touch.”

Anyone with information should call Dorset Police on 101, quoting occurrence number 55200057823.