UPDATE: Police release photos of hammer attack suspect

Ottawa police are investigating a horrifying random attack in the Somerset and Bank St. area on Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014.

Police say a 53-year-old man was walking along Somerset St. when he was attacked by a man with a hammer. The victim suffered severe facial and head injuries and he was transported to Ottawa Hospital.

" I came home to blood all on the side, police tape, a bunch of blood inside, outside, it was pretty gross," said Celine Onat, who lives in an apartment building on Somerset St. just west of Bank street. The attack happened near the building's front entrance.

"Somebody just walks up to somebody and just starts beating them with a hammer right where you live, of course, it put me on edge quite a bit," Onat said.

The victim, she says, lives in her building, and would often say hello to her in passing. She describes him as friendly and quiet, "a super nice guy."

Police say the attack was unprovoked. The attacker left the area on foot, and that he was also carrying a large kitchen knife in a bag. He’s described as a white male, approximately 6’2”, 240 lbs. He’s described by police as “scruffy” looking, wearing a dark toque and dark jacket.

Police were exploring the possibility that this attack was linked to similar ones in Centretown over the past four years, but a lawyer from the firm representing a man charged with five previous assaults with a hammer told CFRA News his client is not responsible for the Tuesday night assault.

The lawyer says his client was arrested and charged following an attack in October 2013, and that he remains in custody as he faces a trial.

Anyone with information on this most recent attack are asked to contact the Ottawa Police at 613-236-1222 ext 5166.