East Sussex wildlife rescue founder Trevor Weeks assaulted

WRAS veterinary ambulance
Image caption Trevor Weeks was driving a veterinary ambulance when he was flagged down and attacked

The founder of the East Sussex Wildlife Rescue and Ambulance Service has been assaulted by a man demanding drugs.

Trevor Weeks was driving a veterinary ambulance when he was flagged down by a passing vehicle on the A22 Eastbourne Road, near Uckfield, on Monday night.

He got out thinking something was wrong, but the offender grabbed his throat and told him to hand over drugs.

The man drove off after he was told the wildlife rescue service was a charity and the vehicle did not carry them.

Mr Weeks, 40, said he had been on his way home after rescuing an animal when the car brought the ambulance to a standstill at about 23:00 BST after overtaking him and putting its hazard lights on.

The suspect was described as white, about 6ft tall, of proportionate build, with facial stubble and wearing dark clothing.

'Opportunist attack'

He was driving a dark older-style hatchback.

Mr Weeks, who last year became an MBE for services to animal welfare after 27 years of rescuing and caring for animals, said the man slammed his head against the ambulance when he realised there were no medical supplies on board.

He said what had happened to him only really "sank in" the next morning when he realised he was lucky not to have been seriously injured.

He added that it was not unusual for the veterinary ambulance to be flagged down, as people often spotted the vehicle after finding animals by the roadside.

Sussex Police have described it as an "opportunist and very unusual attack".

Anyone who saw the two vehicles in the area, either driving or at a stop by the roadside, is asked to contact officers.

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