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Video: MMA fighter takes down would-be thieves

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Mayura Dissanayaka was behind the counter when he noticed his fellow employee return after a run to the bank. The MMA fighter rushed to help when two men attacked the coworker. (Source: KPRC/CNN) Mayura Dissanayaka was behind the counter when he noticed his fellow employee return after a run to the bank. The MMA fighter rushed to help when two men attacked the coworker. (Source: KPRC/CNN)

HOUSTON (KPRC/CNN) - A pair of criminals knew when a gas station employee was coming back with a bank bag. They didn't know his coworker was a mixed martial arts fighter.

Mayura Dissanayaka was behind the counter when he noticed his fellow employee return after a run to the bank. As seen in security camera footage, an SUV pulled in the parking lot and two men jumped out to grab the bank bag.

Mayura ran outside as the two crooks had the victim on the ground, beating him.

"The first guy I saw, I just kicked him in the face," he said. "Then I punched the other guy."

He learned the moves in his decade of training as an MMA fighter. Mayura was named the national champion for five consecutive years in his home country of Sri Lanka.

"We learn how to punch, how to kick and all that stuff you can use in the streets," he said.

The robbers tried to flee back to their vehicle, but one gets caught with a left hook before making it. In the video, it looks like his friend moves to get the fallen man but thinks better of it once Mayura starts moving toward him.

The clerk said he put the crook left behind into submission while waiting for the police to arrive.

"I just kicked him until he laid down on the floor, until he stopped moving because I wasn't sure if he had a knife or a gun," he said. "So I wanted him to stop moving."

Police arrested 33-year-old Odell Mathis. The driver got away, but customers at the gas station still called it "a feel good story."

Copyright 2014 KPRC via CNN. Footage from surveillance, Fuel Depot and CFN/CSN used in the report. All rights reserved.