Palo Alto woman battles purse snatcher


A woman who was attacked and beaten by a purse snatcher in downtown Palo Alto early Sunday morning not only held on to her purse but fought off her attacker and chased him down the street, according to police.

The victim, a woman in her 30s, was walking on the 200 block of Homer Avenue around 1 a.m. while listening to music on headphones, police said.

She was pushed to the ground from behind without warning by a suspect who tried to grab her purse.

The victim rolled on to her back and held on to her purse while the suspect struck her in the face repeatedly, around six to eight times, police said.

The woman then kicked the suspect in the midsection, causing him to back off and run away.

At that point, the woman began chasing the suspect west on Homer Avenue, then north on Ramona Street and east on Forest Avenue, before she stopped at a police garage and yelled for help.

A police employee found her outside, crying and bleeding from her nose, police said. She suffered swelling to the left side of her face and had cuts to one of her lips.

The suspect, meanwhile, continued east on Forest Avenue and the victim lost sight of him. Police were unable to locate him in a search of the area.

The suspect was described as a black male in his 20s or 30s, more than 6 feet tall and wearing a dark or black long-sleeved hooded sweatshirt or jacket and dark pants.

Anyone with information on this crime is asked to call police at (650) 329-2413.

Police urge residents to be aware of their surroundings when out walking, and avoid covering both ears with earphones so that they can hear movements nearby. Anyone observing suspicious behavior should call 911 immediately.

(Copyright 2012 Bay City News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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