The 61-year-old victim was approached by three youths who punched her in the face and pushed her to the ground in County Durham.
However, she bravely fought back, landing a blow to the head of one of her attackers with a torch she carried and her struggles and screams forced the trio to run off empty-handed.
The incident happened in the Hustledown Road area of Stanley, on the field behind St Mary’s Primary School between 7pm and 7.30pm on Sunday, February 5.
The victim was about to head home with her dog when she became aware of people nearby. She was then approached by three youths, thought to be in their mid-teens and all wearing hooded tops. They threatened her and demanded she hand over any money, bags or mobile phone she might have.
Fortunately the woman was not seriously injured, but was left with bruises to her face and her coat was ripped during the attack.
Det Con Andy Froggatt, from Durham Constabulary, said: "This was a totally random attack in built-up, residential area which was overlooked by a number of houses and is adjacent to a busy main road.
“The victim was left shocked and sustained minor bruising during the incident. Fortunately her determination and courage in standing up to these cowards meant they left empty-handed.”
Anyone who was in the area on Sunday evening and may have information is asked to ring police on 101 or Crimestoppers, 0800 555111.