A popular Big Issue seller has been attacked by a man who grabbed him by the throat.
Vasile Calin was assaulted as he was selling the magazine from his pitch outside Marks & Spencer on Parliament Street.
It happened out of the blue at 2pm yesterday (Monday). Vasile described his attacker as a big man.
The attack left Vasile with cuts and bruises on his face, neck and both arms.
“I don’t understand why he did it,” he told YorkMix. “I’m working for the Big Issue. I’m very hungry, I pay for my food, I pay for my rent.
“I didn’t understand what his problem is.”
As it was happening, a friend of Vasile’s came over to ask if he was all right. The attacker moved on and the police were called.
Has anything like this ever happened to him before? “No – it’s the first time here in York,” he said. “Six years, and nothing.”
But it comes less than a week since Vasile had his bag stolen containing £300 and 100 magazines.
Vasile is well known for his dancing and waving as he sells the Big Issue on Parliament Street.
The attack had made him nervous but “I keep smiling for the people,” he said.
A North Yorkshire Police spokesperson said: “Police received a report of an altercation on Parliament Street, York, shortly after 2pm on Monday.
“Officers attended immediately, and with the support of CCTV and following police enquiries, a suspect was located nearby.
“The man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault at about 2.40pm. He remains in custody at this time.
“The victim sustained cuts to his head and arms. Enquiries are ongoing.”