Sussex Police appeal as three men try to rob Hove girl
Three men have tried to rob a 12-year-old girl in Hove.
Sussex Police said the child was approached by the men who blocked her path in Nizells Avenue. One of the men then told her to go with him.
Insp Gareth Davies said police could not be certain of the men's intentions but officers were treating the incident as attempted robbery.
He said the men ran off after the girl shouted and they were disturbed by a passer-by on Tuesday afternoon.
Patrols stepped up
"The girl did the right thing by shouting to raise the alarm and although she was frightened by the ordeal she was otherwise unhurt," he said.
"We believe these cowardly men intended to steal from her. Although we cannot be certain of their intentions when one told her to come with them we are treating this as attempted robbery and are reassuring children and parents not to be alarmed."
He said police patrols had been stepped up in the area and officers were visiting schools to talk to pupils about stranger danger.
During the incident at about 16:00 BST, one of the men asked to look in her bag and coat pockets.
The girl said "no" and shouted when one of the men took her arm and told her to come with him, officers said.
The men ran off into St Ann Wells Gardens when they were disturbed.
One of them is described as black, aged 20 to 30, with a mark or scar on his left cheek, wearing a black hooded top over his face.
The second was white and in his 30s with a grey hooded top pulled over his face and the third was white and wearing a dark hooded top.