Ultimate Fighting Champ Polyana Viana Foils Robbery Attempt With A Beatdown
“He was scared I was going to beat him up more,” says Polyana Viana.
Polyana Viana throws a punch at JJ Aldrich in the second round of the women's straw weight bout during UFC 227 at Staples Center on August 4, 2018, in Los Angeles, United States [Joe Scarnici/Getty Images]
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL — A man who tried to steal an Ultimate Fighting Champ star’s phone ended up a bloody mess after she pummeled him in a surprise counterattack.
On January 5, Polyana Viana, 27, was sitting outside a building in the Jacarepaguá neighborhood in Rio’s West Zone waiting for an Uber to arrive when she glimpsed a man drawing near.
“When he saw I saw him, he sat next to me,” Viana told MMA Junkie. “He asked me the time, I said it, and I saw he wasn’t going to leave. 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."
Viana knew she could move faster than the man could draw a knife or whatever weapon he may have actually had concealed. “So I stood up. I threw two punches and a kick. He fell, then I caught him in a rear-naked choke,” she said. “Then I sat him down in the same place we were before and said, ‘Now, we’ll wait for the police.’”
"Since he took the punches very quickly, I think he was scared,” she continued. “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.”
“He said, ‘Call the police, then,’ because he was scared I was going to beat him up more,” she added.
People passing by helped Viana call authorities while she held on to the foiled thief.
When law enforcement showed up, they had to transport the injured man to an emergency medical facility to treat his wounds before they could book him at the police station.
As for Viana, she escaped the incident without a scrape — her hands only hurt a bit the following day, she noted — since the man, whose “gun” turned out to be a flimsy cardboard cutout, didn’t attempt to fight back after the lightning-quick beatdown.
This isn't the first time Viana has had to clock someone trying to rob her. She was once rushed by a man in another Brazilian town while his friend waited on a getaway motorcycle.
“He broke my umbrella and tried to take my phone,” Viana recalled. “I said I wasn’t going to give it to him. He tried to take it from my hand, I punched him in the face, and he was scared.”
She admitted she was also frightened because there were two perpetrators in that earlier incident, but, she said, the man who tried to steal her cellphone “was more scared than I was, so he jumped on the motorcycle and left.”
After pressing charges against the new Rio mugger, the UFC warrior ended her wild evening by returning home and cooking herself some dinner — well-deserved!