Police on Thursday were searching for a man who was captured on surveillance video trying to snatch a piece of jewelry right off a woman's neck in an Inland Empire Walmart.
The brazen attack happened March 12 about 5 p.m. when Linda Andrade, 68, was shopping at a Walmart in the 4200 block of E. Highland Avenue in San Bernardino, according to the San Bernardino Police Department.
The man approached Andrade from behind and pulled on her gold necklace and pendant hanging from her neck, leaving her with a large purple bruise.
When he couldn't break the necklace chain, he tried again, but Andrade pushed him away before he ran out of the store, police said.
"I never would dream that something like that would happen," Andrade told NBC4. "I just yelled at him and said, 'What do you think you're doing? That's mine.'"
Andrade said she kept yelling for help, but no one came to help until she got to the exit of the store, where an undercover security guard talked to her.
"It was just like, no big deal," she said. "It made me think maybe I am making something out of nothing."
Andrade said a store employee told her filing a police report would take hours, so she called police when she got home.
That wait to call police may have helped the attacker get away, police said.
"This was a very high priority call," San Bernardino Police Lt. Rich Lawhead said. "Maybe an arriving officer would have seen the suspect."
Walmart apologized on Wednesday to Andrade for the delayed response.
"While we can't always prevent crime from happening, we can definitely do a better job of how we respond in a situation like this," Walmart spokeswoman Dianna Gee said in a statement.
After the attack, surveillance video showed the man getting into what appeared to be a cream-colored four-door sedan parked near the front of the store.
He was last seen wearing a black shirt and a long grey shorts, and headphones with blue ear pieces. He is described as medium height and medium build with a dark complexion and short haircut, police said.
Anyone with information is asked to call San Bernardino Police Lt. 909-384-5738.