- Warning: Graphic images of injuries below
- Video report by ITV News Correspondent Juliet Bremner
A “defenceless” 90-year-old woman is seriously ill in hospital after being subjected to a violent assault in her own bed.
Iris Warner - who is known as Anne - was discovered "in a pool of blood" by her 60-year-old son Jeffrey at her home in Brampton Road, Brent, and was slipping in and out of consciousness, police said.
She was rushed to hospital and was initially in a critical condition.
Although she is now conscious, Mrs Warner remains in a "serious condition" and requires intensive treatment.
Mrs Warner told police she remembers being woken up in bed by a man standing over her and being struck in the face multiple times.
Mr Warner said: “We are shocked and appalled at the violence used against our mother Iris, better known as Anne to her friends and family – a defenceless 90-year-old-woman.
“It has left us feeling stunned and sickened.”
Images of the severe bruising suffered by Mrs Warner have been released by her son and sister as they appeal for the public to come forward with information.
Scotland Yard said Mrs Warner’s bedroom had been left in a “messy manner” but the force has not yet established if anything was stolen.
The attack is believed to have happened at some point between Saturday, June 2, and Monday, June 4.
Detective Inspector Saj Hussain said the "unimaginable" attack was "one of the most horrific" he had seen in his 17 years of policing, adding that it was "one of the worst aggravated burglaries" he had seen.
He continued: “This was a horrific attack carried out on a very vulnerable elderly woman in her own home and must have been absolutely terrifying for Iris.
“She has various medical complications on top of the injuries sustained in the assault that are likely to keep her in hospital for a very long time.”
Brent residents said they had been left "shocked" by the "unbelievable" crime.
"I can't believe someone would do something like that to an elderly woman," Augustine Antoine told ITV News.
"I'm absolutely horrified and extremely shocked... it's just despicable.
"What do they expect to gain out of this? What exactly do they expect to gain? How could you?
"You must be ashamed of yourself whoever you are."
Hitesh Chudasama said he had been living in the "area for 15 years and this is the worst thing that I've heard of in that time.
"I'm gobsmacked... The people who are committing these crimes have no fear... They're an absolute disgrace. What sort of person does that?"
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 07747 476161 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.