Palo Alto police are seeking a man who they said entered a women's bathroom at Cubberley Community Center on Monday night and used a cell phone to take a picture of a woman who was in the stall.
The incident, which occurred just before 10 p.m. on the "J" wing of the sprawling Middlefield Road community center, was the second such occurrence in Cubberley in recent months. Last July, a different case was reported in the "A" wing of Cubberley. In both cases, the victims were women in their 20s. Police believe the suspect may have been the same person.
Police said the woman in the Monday night incident was walking on the breezeway toward the bathroom when she passed a man with a metal pushcart. She reportedly kept walking without exchanging any words with the man and entered the empty restroom. Minutes later, while in the bathroom stall, she reportedly saw a shadow. Police said she looked up and saw a man holding a cell phone over the dividing wall, apparently either taking a photo or a video of her. She yelled and the man ran out of the bathroom, police said.
Officers arrived at Cubberley with a police dog minutes after getting the call but could not find the suspect. Police did speak to a witness at the scene who reported seeing a man running out of the bathroom. The description matched that of the man whom the victim reportedly saw at the breezeway right before the crime. He was described as a man in his 20s, possibly either Hispanic or Asian, between 5 feet 6 inches and 5 feet 8 inches tall, with a "buzz" haircut and a thin mustache. He was described as wearing a black hooded sweatshirt with a zipper and either black pants or long shorts.
Palo Alto police believe it is possible the same suspect is responsible for both the Monday crime and the one that took place in July. According to a police press release, officers are increasing patrols at the community center in response to the Monday night incident.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the department's 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or sent via text message or voice mail to 650-383-8984.