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A woman escaped a possible attempted robbery on the Stanford University campus Thursday night in Palo Alto after a man approached her and said he was trying to decide whether to grab her handbag, according to the Palo Alto Police Department. The woman in her 20s was walking by herself to her car in the 300 block of Pasteur Drive just east of Stanford Hospital at about 8:20 p.m. when a black man in his 40s approached her, police said.
The man started asking the woman questions such as how long she had worked in the area, how long she had walked in the dark by herself and if she was carrying pepper spray, police said. After the victim asked why he wanted to know, the suspect, who did not appear to be armed, told her that he was thinking about stealing her bag, police said.
A jogger then ran past and while the suspect seemed distracted, the woman ran to her car. The man did not follow her, police said. The suspect was described as being about 5 feet 9 inches tall with a thin build, clean-shaven, wearing a blue windbreaker, black pants and a black beanie, police said. Police do not believe the event is connected to a pair of early morning robbery attempts in downtown Palo Alto that took place Dec. 2.
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