Police are appealing for public assistance after an unidentified person used an air rifle as a weapon against an 18-year-old man in Wallsend.

The man was walking at about 4pm on Sunday along the Wallsend to Glendale Cycle-way when he heard a loud noise behind him.When he turned around he was struck by a pellet in his left eyebrow from an unknown location.

The man was taken to the John Hunter Hospital and will now need surgery to remove the pellet which remains lodged just above his eye.

Police are urging anyone with information about the incident to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.