(CNN) — A group of would-be thieves…picked the wrong gas station to rob! They knew an employee was coming back with a bank bag — but they didn’t know another clerk was a mixed martial arts fighter!
Mayura Dissanayaka was behind the counter when he noticed his co-worker return to the store after a run to the bank.
Men in an SUV were watching too, because they went straight for the man and the bank bag as soon as he got out of his car.
Dissanayaka immediately ran outside.
“Just a reaction. You see someone get beat up, you just go out.The first guy I saw, I just kicked him in the face. Then I punched the other guy,” Dissanayaka said.
Video of the incident shows Dissanayaka’s co-worker on the ground taking a beating when Dissanayaka’s first kick catches one of the crooks in the face.
They’re moves Dissanayaka learned from his cage matches.
He has trained in mixed martial arts for more than a decade, and he was named the MMA national champion for five consecutive years in his native country of Sri Lanka.
“We learn how to punch, how to kick and all that stuff you can use in the streets,” Dissanayaka said.
Or in this case — the parking lot.
In seconds, the bad guys begin their retreat — with the getaway car getting further away.
“They were waiting for them, but when they were running back, I caught one guy with a hook, so he fell down — so they just left him,” Dissanayaka said.
The video shows one of the robbers — going back for his accomplice and friend, but he decides against it when Dissanayaka moves towards him.
In the end, they left the guy — and just as he does in the ring, Dissanayaka put him in submission, while he waited for police.
“Just kicked him until he lays down on the floor — until he stopped moving ’cause I wasn’t sure if he had like, a knife or a gun — so I wanted him to stop moving,” Dissanayaka said.
Police arrested the man, identified as 33-year-old O’Dell Mathis.
His partner and the getaway driver got away — but customers of the Fuel Depot still call this a feel good story — unless, of course, you’re Mathis.