The 54-year-old woman was attacked just after her daughter drove her home in Oakland, reported KGO-TV anchor Dion Lim. The would-be thief appeared to have followed them to the home.
Lim shared surveillance video of the incident on Twitter that shows the unknown man following the woman up the stairs to her home and grabbing her purse. The woman, still holding onto the purse, is dragged down their stairs and onto the sidewalk when her daughter and son intervene.
The suspect ran away after the son jumped into action and fled in a getaway car, according to Lim.
The woman suffered minor abrasions on her arm where the suspect grabbed the purse, but no one was seriously injured during the struggle, the station reported.
The daughter, identified only as Jamie, told the station that this was the third time her family has been robbed in Oakland.
No arrests have been made.
Parts of California have been hit with a string of follow-home robberies, in which thieves follow their victims to their homes, confront them and steal their belongings.
The trend of follow-home robberies has become so prominent in Los Angeles that police have implemented a new “Follow Home Task Force.”
Last month, the LAPD said it was investigating more than 110 robberies involving at least six different street gangs in which the victims were followed home.