Officer John V. Mills

Officer John V. Mills

California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, California

End of Watch Friday, January 16, 1970

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John V. Mills

Officer Mills was beaten to death at Soledad Prison by three inmates in retaliation for the deaths of three inmates the previous year. Officer William Shull was beaten to death on July 23, 1970, in retaliation for the same three deaths.

All three inmates were charged with first degree murder. Two of the inmates were tried and acquitted in March of 1972. The evidence revealed that it was the third inmate who killed Officer Mills. That inmate, who was awaiting his trial at San Quentin, was shot and killed by a guard during a prison riot on August 21, 1971. The riot, which he was personally responsible for starting, resulted in the deaths of three Correctional Officers; Officer Frank Deleon, Sergeant Jere Graham, and Officer Paul Krasenes.

On July 21, 1971, Officer Leo Davis was stabbed to death at the San Quentin State Prison while guarding a prisoner who was a witness to Officer Shull's murder. Three inmates were attempting to gain access to the prisoner's hospital cell to murder him and attacked Officer Davis in an attempted to get his keys.


  • Age 25
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Assault
  • Weapon Person
  • Offender Later shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

View all 21 Reflections

Officer John Mills was well liked by many inmates in Soledad which I was one of. It’s been 51 years and I still think of him and want his family to know he treated inmates well and I’m so very sorry he passed in the manner he did. I was released from prison the following year and never returned.

One that admired Mr Mills
Christian Man

October 20, 2021

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