A THIEF stole cigarettes from a Runcorn shop and knocked an elderly man over as he fled.

The man suffered a serious hip injury and had to be treated in hospital.

Detectives are now appealing for witnesses.

The incident happened between 3pm and 3.30pm on Tuesday, December 11, when the offender walked into the Co-op ibn Grangeway and started talking to a shop assistant.

He returned a few minutes later and grabbed a bag containing a quantity of cigarettes.

On his way out he collided with an old man, knocking him to the ground.

The thief is described as white, between 5ft 9ins and 5ft 10ins tall, and of a medium build. He had short dark hair and a rugged complexion. He was wearing a black baseball cap and a black jacket.

Anyone with information should contact Cheshire Police on 101 quoting incident 526 of 11 December 2012.

Information can also be left anonymously, via Crimestoppers, on 0800 555 111