The woman was walking near 15th Avenue and East Cherry Street in the Central District at around 1 a.m. when she stopped to "relieve herself" in some shrubbery, according to police.
As she was urinating, she said a man walked up to her, watched her for a moment and then tried to grab her purse. She was somehow able to hold on to the purse and push the man away.
When he realized he wasn't going to get the purse, police say the man walked away.
The victim walked to a friend's house and called police. Officers arrived soon after and searched the area, but they were unable to find the man.
The purse snatcher is described as a roughly 30-year-old Hispanic man with black hair. He was wearing a red shirt and light colored pants at the time of the incident.