British tourist stabbed in the head in San Francisco mugging in 'critical condition'

The 44-year-old man was stabbed after fighting for his bag and trying to run away

A British tourist is in a critical condition after being stabbed in the head during a mugging in San Francisco.

The 44-year-old man, who has not been identified, was walking with his niece at around 8.30pm on Friday when they were attacked by a woman and a man.

He is believed to have stabbed the victim when he fought for his bag and attempted to flee, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Following the stabbing, the two attackers, described as a man in his 30s or 40s and a woman in her 20s, fled the scene with the victim’s bag, which is believed to have contained his passport, wallet and mobile phone

He was transferred to San Francisco general hospital with life-threatening injuries, police told the newspaper, while his 23-year-old niece, who he was visiting in the city, was unharmed.

It is the third such attack in recent months in which tourists visiting San Francisco have been the victims of muggings, although police spokesperson Carlos Manfredi said he did not believe holidaymakers were being targeted.

"It happens to everybody, so every now and then there’s going to be a tourist in the mix, especially in the tourism capital of the world,” he told the paper.

However, former San Francisco Sheriff, Ross Mirkarimi, who was in the same neighbourhood the attack took place, said he felt it showed a need for a greater police presence on the streets of the city.

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