Evanston police say a south Evanston woman foiled a robbery attempt Saturday evening.

The woman had just entered her apartment building in the 900 block of Reba Place about 6 p.m. when, as she was checking her mail, she heard the foyer door open.

She told police she initially paid no attention, thinking the person was another tenant. But then she heard a male voice demand she turn over her money.

She initially thought he was joking, but when he again demanded her purse, she told him “no.”

That, police say, angered the would-be robber, who reached for his waistband and claimed he had a gun.

With that the woman sprayed the man in the face with pepper spray, and he ran from the building.

Police say the suspect is described as a black male in his 20s, about 5-feet-8-inches tall and weighing 190 pounds. He was wearing a ski mask, a grey hooded pullover, dark jeans and dark boots.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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