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Man Gropes Woman In Stanford Shopping Center, Flees

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Sketch of a suspect in a sexual assault at the Stanford Shopping Center.  (Source: Palo Alto Police)

Sketch of a suspect in a sexual assault at the Stanford Shopping Center. (Source: Palo Alto Police)

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PALO ALTO (CBS SF) — A male suspect fled after groping a woman in the Stanford Shopping Center parking lot in Palo Alto Wednesday afternoon, police said.

Officers received a report of sexual battery at 12:13 p.m. at 180 El Camino Real, near Stanford University and responded to the scene.

The female victim, who was in her 30s, was walking on the sidewalk between the Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus shops on Orchard Lane when an unknown male suspect stepped in front of her and used his hand to grab one of the victim’s breasts over her clothing, according to police.

The suspect ran away and was last see in a parking lot on Welch Road, police said.

The victim called 911 from her cell phone and both Palo Alto police and Stanford Department of Public Safety conducted an extensive search for the suspect, but were unable to locate him, police said.

The victim was not injured in the attack, police said.

The victim described the suspect as an East Indian male about 30-years-old, wearing a yellow hooded sweatshirt with the hood up over his head. The victim estimated the suspect was about 5 feet 9 inches tall with a medium build, police said.

Palo Alto police believed this case may be related to a similar sexual battery case that occurred Aug. 20 near downtown Palo Alto.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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