Man Dies in Probable Drowning Accident

Body Discovered In White Rock Swimming Hole

A few hours after an Oxnard man was reporting missing Sunday evening near the White Rock swimming hole, the Sheriff’s Dive Team discovered his body in deep water below a jumping rock. His death, reported Sheriff’s spokesperson Drew Sugars, was likely the result of an accident, but a final determination is pending until the Coroner’s Bureau finishes its investigation.

At around 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, August 8, dispatchers received a call from the 45-year-old man’s friends who said they hadn’t seen him since earlier in the afternoon. He was last seen between 2:15 – 2:45 p.m. diving off nearby rocks and swimming in the White Rock swimming hole — which is located near White Rock Camp off Paradise Road — but was never witnessed getting out of the water. The victim’s chair and clothing were found near the water’s edge, said Sugars.

After a search of the area, with the help of a County Fire helicopter, the Sheriff’s Dive Team found the deceased man underwater at around 11:00 p.m.

The man’s identity will not be released until his family is notified.

[UPDATE, August 10]: The victim has been identified as 44-year-old James Jay Ryan. (Authorities originally said he was 45-years-old; his birthday would have been this Friday.) Ryan’s death has been ruled an accidental drowning, said Sugars, however a toxicology report is pending to determine if alcohol or drugs may have been a contributing factor.

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