Woman thwarts purse snatcher by throwing hot coffee on suspect in Palo Alto

PALO ALTO (KRON) — A woman thwarted an attempted purse snatcher in Palo Alto on Saturday by throwing hot coffee on him, according to police.

The incident happened at the Stanford Shopping Center at around 10:19 p.m.

Officers responded to 180 El Camino Real, but the two suspects were not there when police arrived.

The suspect and his accomplice escaped on a bike and remain at-large, according to police.

Police said a woman in her 20s had been walking in the parking lot near El Camino Real and Quarry Road when two people rode up to her on a bike. The accomplice was pedaling, while the primary suspect was standing on the pegs of the rear wheel with his hands on his partner’s shoulders, police said.

When the primary suspect got off his bike to try and pull away the purse, the victim threw the coffee on the suspect’s face. The suspects then sped off.

Nothing was stolen in the incident, police said.

The victim suffered a minor injury to her face.

The primary victim is described as a black man in his 20s, about 6 feet 4 inches tall, skinny, with a squared-off flat-top haircut. He was wearing a V-neck cotton T-shirt and black jeans.

The accomplice is described as a white man in his 20s. He had short, brown or black hair, and a thin, medium build. He was wearing a gray short-sleeved shirt with thin, black horizontal stripes on the body and a floral design on the collar and end of the sleeves, police said. He was also wearing blue jeans.

The bicycle was not a small BMX-type, the victim said.

Sketches have been released of the suspect.

Police said this is not connected to the two other robberies that happened at the Stanford Shopping Center early last month.

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