Police Officer James Joseph Doyle

Police Officer James Joseph Doyle

Ventura County Community College District Police Department, California

End of Watch Sunday, March 23, 1975

James Joseph Doyle

Police Officer James Doyle was shot and killed on the Ventura College campus while conducting building checks.

The special checks of the buildings were in response to a recent rash of burglaries. After shooting Officer Doyle, the suspect stole his service weapon and patrol car. The suspect, who was a student at the school and the son of a faculty member, was apprehended three days later in Idaho.

The suspect was convicted of murder and sentenced to life January 28, 1976.

Officer Doyle was a U.S. Army veteran.


  • Age 24
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

View all 17 Reflections

Wa. St. OSI, Supervising Agent, Ret.
Officer Doyle was my replacement as campus police officer.
May 8, 2006

Read more: http://www.odmp.org/officer/reflections/4280-police-officer-james-joseph-doyle#ixzz2zD4ku6mr

The post made by the above individual was made in 2006. I'm sure I've seen it before as I tend to visit the pages of those who have fallen while protecting colleges and universities on a fairly regular basis, if for no other reason to remind myself (though I know it full well) that being a 'campus cop' does not guarantee you're out of harms way as many naïve folks out there believe.

In reading that post (probably for the umpteenth time, I REALLY read it, closely, with more thought than in the past. It's a rather frightening scenario and told in such a straightforward way that it almost puts the reader there with Officer Doyle. The note that the media had 'demoted' Officer Doyle to a security guard hit home when MIT Police Officer Sean Collier was murdered a year ago today. At first, many in the media, both local and national (how often does the death of a campus cop rate national attention?) called Officer Collier a security officer. I know I called a number of media outlets and heard after that many of my colleagues did as well. Multiply that number by the number of college and university police officers around the country and no doubt, at some point, someone freaked out and everyone started to get it right. No, we weren't outraged because WE felt slighted, it was because a Police Officer was murdered AS a Police Officer. No disrespect meant to any security officer, but, hey, if there wasn't a difference, we'd all go by the same title. We don't.

I know that you are watching over us all, it's what a POLICE OFFICER does. Thanks.

Ptl. Jim Leahy, Jr.
Harvard University Police Department

April 18, 2014

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