A MAN got into a car and demanded the passenger got out as he tried to steal her family’s Fiat Panda.
The woman’s husband had gone to a chip shop when the would-be thief got in and said he was going to take the car.
She reacted by hitting the man, who got out and “calmly walked out of sight” as her husband returned.
The attempted theft happened at 6.15pm on New Year’s Eve in Adelaide Row, Seaham.
Sergeant Ian Dickinson said: “There was no violence used by him at all.
“We’re looking for any information in regards to this.
“It could have been a nasty incident for the people involved, and it’s the first time I’ve heard of this happening in all my service.
“It’s certainly an unusual incident.”
The man is described as in his late 20s or early 30s, with an oval face and light coloured stubble.
He wore a hat with a snowflake design, a dark hooded top and grey tracksuit bottoms.