Ventura College Police Officer James J. Doyle, 24, was shot and killed while on patrol on Sunday, March 23, 1975. Doyle had apparently been checking campus buildings, in the wake of a rash of burglaries and break-ins. Officer Doyle was a full-time administration of justice student at Ventura College, in addition to working as the newest and youngest member of the college police department.
Carl Russell Carson, a Ventura College student and son of a math instructor on campus, was arrested and convicted for the murder of Officer Doyle. Carson had taken Doyles duty revolver and patrol car after the attack. When Carson was arrested in Twin Falls, Idaho, 3 days later, he was driving a stolen truck, and was in possession of Officer Doyle’s .357 Magnum revolver.
Before coming to Ventura College, Officer Doyle had served as a military police sergeant in the U.S. Army, and hoped to eventually become a deputy sheriff.