This past weekend in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, a man attempted to steal a women’s phone while she was waiting for an Uber. Unfortunately for the robber, that woman was UFC strawweight Polyana Viana.
Viana said she was waiting for an Uber outside of her apartment in Western Rio de Janiero when the incident occurred on Saturday night. The 26-year-old described the situation when she spoke to MMAjunkie.
“When he saw I saw him, he sat next to me. He asked me the time, I said it, and I saw he wasn’t going to leave.” Viana said. “So I already moved to put my cell phone in my waist. And then he said, ‘Give me the phone. Don’t try to react, because I’m 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. Then I sat him down in the same place we were before and said, ‘Now we’ll wait for the police.’”
It turned out that the gun, which Viana figured was too soft, turned out to be a cutout of a gun made from cardboard paper. The man, who Viana held to the floor whilst waiting for police to arrive, had only recently been released from a previous arrest. The Brazilian said the man pleaded to her to let him go once she had taken him to the ground.
“I was fine because he didn’t even react after. Since he took the punches very quickly, I think he was scared. So he didn’t react anymore. He told me to let him go, like ‘I just asked for the time.’ I said, ‘Asked for the time my ass,’ because he saw I was very angry. I said I wouldn’t let go and that I was going to call the police.”
UFC president Dana White even tweeted about Viana:
Viana (10-2) made her UFC debut in February 2018 defeating Maia Kahaunaele-Stevenson by first-round submission. Since then, she has suffered a unanimous decision loss to J.J. Aldrich.