Around 8:45 p.m., an employee at a restaurant in the 400 block of Emerson Street called police to report that two people had just told him they had been robbed nearby about 10 or 15 minutes earlier.
Officers searched the area but were unable to locate the suspect.
The two victims, a man in his 50s and a woman in her 20s, said they were walking north along the sidewalk in the 300 block of Ramona Street when a man approached them and blocked their way, according to police.
The man had a handgun and demanded the victims' wallets and the woman's purse, which the victims handed over.
Police said the suspect then told the pair to walk back in the direction from which they had come. The victims complied and said they heard the man running north on Ramona Street.
Neither victim was injured, but police said the incident should serve as a reminder for people to be aware of their surroundings when out walking.
The pair described the suspect as a black man in his early 20s who is about 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighs roughly 165 pounds. At the time of the robbery, he was wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt with the hood pulled up and dark pants.
Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call Palo Alto police at (650) 329-2413. Anonymous tips may be emailed to email@example.com or sent via text message or voice mail to (650) 383-8984.