Another Lesson in Disparity of Force … This Time With Positive Results

Today’s report is for every Cop and Concealed Weapon Permit Holder who DOES NOT carry their weapon EVERYWHERE they go.

I know there are times when carrying a gun is uncomfortable and a significant inconvenience. Dealing with carrying a weapon in hot weather, while traveling on airlines, enjoying vacation, or exercising is not pleasant, but there is nothing worse than needing a gun and not having one. Shame on you if you are caught without your gun when it is needed to save your life or the lives of your loved ones — especially when you have been granted the right and opportunity to carry it with you at all times.

As you will once again see from this report — a lethal confrontation with multiple adversaries can occur at any time, in any place, and when you least expect it …

Last Monday I shared a lesson in Disparity of Force and explained when you can and cannot shoot unarmed adversaries. In last week’s example the victim was not armed and as a result sustained a life threatening beating. In this week’s example, the victim was armed and the outcome was significantly more positive.

When you read the news report below, pay particular attention to the following:

  1. The unprovoked assault occurred in broad daylight, in a very public place, with numerous people standing by.
  2. Although there were numerous bystanders, nobody came to the aid of the victim during the assault.
  3. The victim was attacked from behind by four or five men.
  4. The victim pleaded for attackers to stop and identified himself before presenting his weapon.
  5. The leader of the assault was a sociopath with a history of similar crimes, so the victim’s plea to stop was not effective.
  6. Only a gun in trained hands prevented the victim from sustaining permanent injury or death.
  7. Several shots were fired by the victim resulting in 5 hits. Two of which were thoracic cavity hits in the leader of the attack resulting in his death. Two hits were peripheral hits in the thigh of another attacker who survived.
  8. Also note that the victim mentioned he was feeling ill inside the restaurant so he stepped outside for some fresh air and was then attacked from behind. In general, criminals look for easy victims. Keep in mind that if you appear weak, frail, or sick to a criminal he will be more likely to choose to attack you over someone else.

Here is the news story:

Off-duty Costa Mesa officer jumped from behind, police say

Investigation continues into Temecula shooting that left one dead, one wounded.


An off-duty Costa Mesa police officer was jumped from behind and beaten by a crowd of men outside a Mexican restaurant in Old Town Temecula before pulling his gun and opening fire Saturday, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department said Tuesday.

The officer killed one of his attackers and injured another. The beating left the officer with at least six staples in the back of his head.

The officer, whose name has not been released, had been eating with a group of family and friends at the Bank of Mexican Food restaurant in the heart of Old Town Temecula on Saturday evening, when he felt ill and stepped outside for some fresh air, said Riverside County sheriff’s spokesman Jerry Franchville.

The officer was sitting outside the restaurant about 7:15 p.m. when he was suddenly hit from behind with a heavy object, possibly a chair, Franchville said. The blow knocked the officer to the ground, temporarily dazing him.

Bleeding from the head and blood running into his eyes, the officer realized he was being attacked by four or five men, Franchville said. The officer identified himself as a police officer and begged for the men to stop beating him.

Several witnesses not connected to the officer or his attackers heard the officer identify himself as a police officer, and some even saw him flash his badge, Franchville said.

Despite the officer’s cries for the attack to stop, the beating continued, Franchville said. The officer pulled out his gun and fired five times, hitting Shaun Adam Vilan twice in the chest and arm, and 22-year-old Taylor Willis twice in the thigh.

Vilan, who was on parole for assault with a deadly weapon, later died at a local hospital. Willis remained hospitalized Tuesday evening.

The attack was unprovoked, Franchville said.

Vilan and Willis had spent the day at Temecula Rod Run, an annual three-day custom hot-rod and car show that draws tens of thousands. Vilan’s 7-year-old son, who went to the car show with his father, witnessed the attack on the officer and the shooting of his father. The officer did not attend the event.

It is unclear whether the men involved in the melee were intoxicated.

Authorities have not released the identity of the officer, citing protection under the Peace Officer’s Bill of Rights. Police officers are allowed, under California law, to carry guns while off-duty.

Investigators from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department are investigating the shooting. The results of their investigation will be handed over to Riverside County prosecutors to determine whether the officer, a 10-year veteran of the Costa Mesa Police Department, should face criminal charges in the shooting.

The officer, who is recovering at home from severe head wounds, is on paid administrative leave, said Sgt. Bryan Glass of the Costa Mesa Police Department.

Vilan, who was on parole after spending six years in state prison for two assaults, had a lengthy history of ganging up on people and attacking them, according to court records. His convictions included two unprovoked assaults in 1996 and 1998, which involve Vilan smashing two people in the face with beer bottles.

In a 1996 attack, Vilan smashed a man in the face with a beer bottle, and continued to hold the broken bottle over his victim’s face until the man’s brother hit Vilan over the head with a wrench.

In the 1998 incident, Vilan, who was on bail at the time, approached a guest at a birthday party and sniffed him, saying, "You smell like white trash." The two men squared off, but before any punches could be thrown, Vilan smashed a beer bottle in the face of the man who stepped between them, court records show.

An October 2001 opinion by Court of Appeal, 4th Appellate District, also show a series of allged assaults for which Vilan was never charged, including a birthday party in August 1996 when Vilan and a friend were said to have brutally beat a guest who tried to stop them from ransacking the bedroom of the host’s father, punching him and stomping on his head with steel-toed boots.

A month later, Vilan and two other men were accused of jumping the brother of one of Vilan’s previous victims, punching him, knocking him to the ground and kicking him, court records show.

In November 1997, according to court accounts, Vilan and two other men attacked a man eating in his car with his girlfriend outside a fast-food restaurant, punching and kicking him.

Two months later, Vilan punched a man in the face three times just for looking at him, according to court records.

"None of the victims did any provoking — Vilan and his cohorts did all the provoking. All the victims were outnumbered. All the encounters featured low blows, i.e., unfair fighting by Vilan and his cohorts," wrote Manuel A. Ramirez, presiding justice of the California Court of Appeal, 4th Appellate District, in the October 2001 opinion rejecting Vilan’s appeal that evidence admitted in his two trials was improperly admitted.

Vilan worked as a day trader after being released from prison 2.5 years ago.

Family and friends held a candlelight vigil in Old Town Temecula on Tuesday night to remember Vilan.

This was a textbook case of Disparity of Force and the outcome could only have been more positive if the victim’s shots had been more accurate.

If you know the victim, have him contact me; I have set aside a Front Sight Challenge Lifetime Membership to award him for his actions and service to all law-abiding citizens.

Now, if you are a Cop or Concealed Weapon Permit Holder and are NOT carrying your gun everywhere you go, make a decision TODAY to change your foolish ways and let your gun be your constant companion of your walks. When the chips are down, others may leave your defense, but your gun will not fail you if you do your part.


Dr. Ignatius Piazza
Front Sight Founder and Director
Four-Weapons Combat Master
Your host of Front Sight Challenge Reality TV Series

P.S. Please share this report with your family and friends. If your family and friends would like to receive their own reports, our 12-page brochure, and 90-minute award-winning DVD then please direct them to: Front Sight.

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