Woman in critical condition after armed raid on shop
The 63-year-old suffered serious head injuries in the 'appalling and senseless' attack.
A woman is in a critical condition in hospital after an armed raid on a shop.
The 63-year-old suffered serious head injuries in the "appalling and senseless" attack, which is being treated as attempted murder, in Catrine, East Ayrshire.
The attacker came into the Catrine Convenience Store through a rear entrance and threatened the woman with a knife and a heavy blunt weapon at around 2.35pm on Sunday afternoon.
She gave him money, believed to be around a four-figure sum - but he then seriously assaulted her with the blunt weapon before leaving the shop through the back exit.
A member of the public raised the alarm after he found the woman lying injured in the shop.
She was taken by ambulance to Crosshouse Hospital in Kilmarnock then transferred to the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow, where she is being treated for serious head injuries.
Hospital staff describe her condition as critical.
Police are treating the incident as attempted murder and appealed for information about the attack at the shop in St Germain Street.
'This is an appalling and senseless crime on this defenceless woman.'Detective chief inspector Martin Fergus
Detective chief inspector Martin Fergus said: "This is an appalling and senseless crime on this defenceless woman.
"She had handed him over a large sum of money, so there was absolutely no need for him to attack her in the violent and sickening way he did. He obviously has no conscience and must be caught.
"Yesterday afternoon at the time of the incident, the local area would have been busy and I'm sure that someone would have seen this man with his distinctive pink scarf wrapped round his face."
He added: "Today, officers are continuing their extensive inquiries, including carrying out inquiries in the local area and studying CCTV footage to gather more information.
"We are urging anyone with information that may assist this investigation to come forward as a matter of urgency."
The attacker is white, 5ft 10in with a slim build and short dark hair.
He was wearing a dark Lonsdale tracksuit hooded top with white piping down each arm, a pink scarf covering his face and a dark baseball cap and black gloves.