UFC's Dana White hires Best Buy security guard who was sacked for taking down Hawaii shoplifter in viral video
Dana White hired a former Best Buy employee after she was unfairly sacked for thwarting an alleged shoplifter in Hawaii. Security footage from the store in Hawaii showed 24-year-old Summer Tapasa tussling with a man who was trying to steal a television set. In a stunning display of commitment, the woman used her forearms to block the exit and wrestled the man to the ground before he fled from the store empty-handed.
The clip caught the eye of UFC president White, 51, earlier this year, and he flew the security guard to Las Vegas to watch Conor McGregor beat Donald Cerrone at UFC 246.
"It was amazing," Tapasa later told ESPN. "I was like, I cannot believe I'm here in this moment. In this particular spot – I can't believe it. It's unbelievable."
When Tapasa's UFC position was still unconfirmed, she said she'd be open to any role the UFC deemed suitable for her. Except for a rather popular one. "I'm definitely not getting in that cage," she told ESPN with a laugh. "I've seen some fans say, 'Man, she'd be great in the cage.' No, no, no. I'm perfectly OK. I'm cool with just being a bodyguard or security."
Last week, White announced that the hero security guard had joined the UFC security team. "Do you remember the girl, Summer, that worked for Best Buy as security in Hawaii?" he said in a clip on Twitter. "Somebody was stealing a TV, some dude, and she beat his ass and stopped him from stealing the TV, and she got fired from Best Buy which I thought was horrible."
"So I brought her out to Vegas, I offered her a job here and she went back to Hawaii, she weighed up all her options and she decided to come work for the UFC, so she is now a UFC employee," he explained. "So all you people thinking about f****** around over here at the UFC, you'll get your ass whooped by Summer!"
Tapasa later shared her thoughts on her new gig, posing in a UFC t-shirt outside their headquarters. "My name is Summer Tapasa and I am a UFC corporate security officer. I've been working for the UFC for eight days. I'm looking forward to expanding my career and hopefully moving on up," she revealed.
Welcome to the @ufc Summer Tapasa!! I’m so happy you chose a career with us 👊🏻👊🏻 pic.twitter.com/GCmcCJF6sL— danawhite (@danawhite) September 3, 2020
Tapasa was seen in the viral security clip taking a wide stance as she blocked the exit, before the thief charged at her with a box in his hand. "As soon as I saw him running, the first instinct was just to stop him," she told ESPN. "...I wasn't about to let that happen. Not on my watch."
The 24-year-old repeatedly pushed the man from the door and sent him crashing into a nearby sign. The duo soon moved out of the camera's view struggling before another Best Buy employee intervened and separated them.
"I've been a big girl my entire life," Tapasa said earlier this year. "Yet, I would have never thought I’d be given the opportunities I’m getting now. I’ve been talked about my entire life. Yet, I still carry on."