Diners at a Falkirk pizza restaurant were shocked when a toddler was apparently assaulted by her mother.
The incident occurred yesterday in Pizza Hut at the Central Retail Park at around 3 p.m.
A girl, aged around two, was assaulted when she was leaving the restaurant.
The girl, who was attached to reins, appeared to be upset and was then dragged towards the exit by a woman, who is believed to be her mother.
When the toddler reacted to this the woman picked her up and shook her, before pulling her out of the restaurant.
They were accompanied by a man who is believed to be the girl’s father. He did not intervene in the assault.
They left the restaurant and initially walked in the direction of Grahams Road. However, they were last seen at the bus stop opposite Forth Valley Royal Hospital.
Several customers witnessed the incident and found it very distressing. They contacted the police.
The girl is described as a white toddler with blonde hair. She was wearing a pink jacket and was pushing a toy pram.
The female suspect is described as white and in her 30s with a heavy build and red hair. She was wearing a dark jacket and blue jeans.
The man accompanying them is described as white and also in his 30s. He is around 5ft 9in of slim build with short dark hair. He was wearing a white t-shirt and dark tracksuit bottoms.
Sergeant David Ferguson said: “This was very distressing incident, which was very upsetting for members of the public to witness.
“We are extremely concerned about the welfare of the young girl who was assaulted and we wish to trace her as a matter of urgency. We are working with partners to establish her identity.
“Anyone who witnessed the incident, or recognises the family’s description, is asked to come forward immediately.”
Those with information should contact Police Scotland on 101 or anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.