Police say the suspect walked up to the female victim on Scholar Drive outside the University Court Apartments and asked her for the time.
The victim answered and kept walking, and the suspect grabbed her from behind, forced her to the ground and stole her cell phone before running off toward Delaware Avenue.
Police describe the suspect as black, about 21 years old, 6 feet tall, 160 pounds and clean-shaven, wearing a black fleece coat.
Anyone with information can call Newark detectives or Crimestoppers.
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