Police have released an image of a man they would like to speak to after a 78-year-old woman was allegedly savagely attacked while opening a Melbourne church.

Penelope Katsavos was opening St Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church in South Yarra - as she has done "every morning for the past 30 years" - about 6.15am on Saturday when she was allegedly punched in the face, pushed to the ground and kicked.

She was left alone on the ground on Barry Street for half an hour after the alleged incident before she was found by a worker cleaning the street.

Police allege a man assaulted Ms Katsavos before stealing her shopping trolley containing personal items.

Police said officers found the trolley in a nearby street with her personal items intact.

 

Penelope Katsavos recovering in hospital after allegedly being bashed while opening her church on Saturday morning.
Penelope Katsavos recovering in hospital after allegedly being bashed while opening her church on Saturday morning.

 

Ms Katsavos, of South Yarra, was taken to hospital with a broken arm and a severely bruised face.

Detectives on Tuesday released images and CCTV footage of a man they believe could assist with their investigation.

The man has been described as caucasian in appearance, of a thin build, with dark coloured hair and a moustache.

 

A man police would like to speak to after Penelope Katsavos, 78, was allegedly attacked while opening the St Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church in South Yarra about 6.15am on March 13. Picture: Supplied
A man police would like to speak to after Penelope Katsavos, 78, was allegedly attacked while opening the St Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church in South Yarra about 6.15am on March 13. Picture: Supplied

 

He was wearing a brown T-shirt, dark coloured pants and shoes.

A horrifying image of Ms Katsavos sitting bloodied and bruised after the incident shocked her fellow parishioners and the wider Melbourne community.

Parishioner Jane Pallot told NCA NewsWire that Ms Katsavos was "doing OK" and being treated in The Alfred hospital.

Anyone who witnessed the incident or with information has been urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

jack.paynter@news.com.au

Originally published as Church bashing: CCTV image released


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