A WOMAN was allegedly punched in the face before the assailant rode off on a bike, police have said.

Essex Police has launched an investigation after the incident in Harlow on Monday morning.

The force says a woman reported she was assaulted as she walked along a cycle track on Fourth Avenue, near Harberts Road and the Princess Alexandra Hospital, at about 7am.

She reported a man got off a bike and, after a short conversation, punched her in the face before riding off.

Detectives are now appealing for the public’s help.

A police spokesman said: “If you have any information or footage in relation to this incident, then please get in contact with us.”

Reports can be made at essex.police.uk or by calling 101 quoting crime reference 42/67081/24.

Anonymous reports can be made by contacting the independent charity Crimestoppers at crimestoppers-uk.org or by calling 0800 555 111.