On Saturday morning, a mugger in Jacarepagua, Rio de Janeiro, thought he had found the perfect target sitting on a bench on the side of the road. Unfortunately for him, he was about to discover that the 27-year-old woman in question happened to be UFC strawweight star Polyana Viana.
The MMA fighter was waiting there outside her apartment for an Uber she had ordered when the mugger approached her. As soon as she looked at him, he sat down on the bench next to her, according to a report by the Guardian.
After he had asked her for the time and she had told him, it appeared he wasn’t getting ready to leave her be. Instead, as she went to put her cellphone away in her pants pocket, he demanded she give him the phone, warning her that he was armed.
“Then he put his hand over [a gun], but I realized it was too soft. He was really close to me. So I thought, ‘If it’s a gun, he won’t have time to draw it.’ So I stood up. I threw two punches and a kick. He fell, then I caught him in a rear-naked choke,” she explained. “Then I sat him down in the same place we were before and said, ‘Now we’ll wait for the police.'”
According to Dana White, this is what happened when a guy tried to rob Polyana Viana pic.twitter.com/bINTbYgi0n
— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) January 7, 2019
Viana suspected the gun was actually either a toy or even just a knife rather than an actual firearm, but later found out it had been nothing more than a piece of cardboard cut into the shape of a gun.
The UFC fighter reassured everyone that she was all right following the encounter and that the would-be robber was more afraid of her by the time they were done than she had been of him.
“He told me to let him go, like ‘I just asked for the time.’ I said, ‘Asked for the time my a**,’ because he saw I was very angry. I said I wouldn’t let go and that I was going to call the police.”
While she had been sitting alone when the man had approached her, Viana called on passersby to contact the police for her. While they waited for law enforcement, Viana kept him “immobilized in a kimura-like position,” Unilad reported.
Before he was taken to the police station, the man was first transported to a hospital nearby where he was treated for his injuries.
UFC president Dana White took to Twitter after finding out the news, sharing a photo of the attacker’s face along with the aptly put caption, “On the left is @Polyana_VianaDF, one of our @UFC fighters and on the right is the guy who tried to rob her #badf**kingidea.”