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- Nov. 02, 1889 -

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Gila County Sheriff's Office Agency Patch
Resided: AZ, USA
Born: Unk  
Fallen: Nov. 02, 1889
Race/Sex: Caucasian Male
Dept: Gila County Sheriff's Office
Dept. Type: County/Police
Hero's Rank: Sheriff
Sworn Date: Unk
FBI Class: Homicide - Gun
Weapon Class: Firearm
Bio: Not Available
Fatal Incident Summary
Offender: No Info
Location: AZ   USA   Sat. Nov. 02, 1889
Summary: Sheriff Reynolds and Deputy William Holmes were shot and killed and another deputy was shot and seriously wounded while taking several outlaws to the Territorial Prison in Yuma, Arizona. The deputies and the sheriff were overpowered when they let the prisoners out of the prison wagon to give the horses an easier walk on an incline. Two of the suspects were later killed and three others arrested and tried for the murders.

The leader of the gang that murdered the two was known as the Apache Kid. The following year he was also responsible for the murder of Chief Ben Williams, of the Bisbee Police Department.

The Apache Kid, a short, stocky, full blooded apache, was a sergeant of indian scouts who assisted General George Crook in the capture of Geronimo in 1886 before he turned outlaw. In 1888 he was sent to Alcatraz for murder. A year later to the surprise of many he was pardoned by President Cleveland. Soon afterwards he and several indians were charged with murder, resulting in the murders of Sheriff Reynolds and Deputy Holmes. For the next five years the Kid and his gang went along the U.S. Mexican border on both sides killing people and taking whatever they wanted. In 1894 the Apache Kid mysteriously dissapeared. It is not known what happened to him.


As a boy, Haskay-bay-nay-ntayl(Apache Kid give name) had been abducted by Yuma Indians until he was rescued by the US Army, As a teenager in the mid 1870's, he was more or less adopted by Al Sieber, the Chief of the Army Scouts. The Kid went on to be a valuable army scout.

After a squirmish at a Scout party where some scouts killed each other, The Kid fled and subsequently surrendered and was sent to prison. His conviction was overturned and he was set free. After a new warrant was issued, he went on the run once again.

Again they(he and his gang) were arrested, and again they were convicted, this time sentenced to seven years in prison, and transported to Yuma Territorial Prison. Shortly afterward, the five escaped by overpowering three guards, Glen Reynolds, Eugene Middleton, and W. A. Holmes. Reynolds was killed, with his pistol and watch stolen in the process, and Holmes too was killed; Middleton was badly hurt, but stated later that he would have been killed had the Kid not intervened and prevented his death.

A fierce snowstorm prevented any pursuit of the escapees. For years there were unconfirmed reports of sightings, but nothing ever came of any of them. Over the next several years, the Apache Kid was accused or linked to various crimes, including rape and murder, but there were never any solid links to him being involved in these or any crimes at all. For all practical purposes, he vanished.

During an 1890 shootout between Apache renegades and Mexican soldiers, a warrior was killed and found to be in the possession of Reynolds'[slain Yuma guard] watch and pistol. However, the warrior was said to have been much too old to be the Apache Kid. The last reported crimes allegedly committed by the Kid were in 1894. It was in that year in the San Mateo Mountains west of Socorro, New Mexico that Charles Anderson, a rancher, and his cowboys killed an Apache who had been rustling cattle and who was identified at the time as the Apache Kid. That identification is also contested. After that, he became more of a legend than anything else. In 1899, Colonel Emilio Kosterlitzky, of the Mexican Rurales, reported that the Kid was alive and well and living among the Apache in the Sierra Madre Occidental. This was never confirmed.

In his book, "Cow Dust and Saddle Leather" by Ben Kemp (1968) {Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 67-24617, University of Oklahoma Press.} relates in detail his knowledge of the last days of the Apache Kid. Chapter 17 is entitled "The Apache Kid's Last Horse Wrangle". In it the author describes the scene he witnesses as a 17 year old. In that chapter he describes how Billy Keene, a member of the posse, actually had the head of the Apache Kid in Chloride, New Mexico in the year 1907.

The chapter describes how, starting September 4, 1907, the posse split up and tracked down the Apache Kid in the San Mateo Mountains. The author describes in detail events related by Billy Keene. He also relates how the watch actually belonged to a rancher names Saunders. The rancher Saunders was found dead and another man, Red Mills, was actually being held in connection with his murder. The gold-filled Elgin watch had been sent to a jeweler to be repaired. The jeweler who repaired it had written down the serial number and inscribed one of his own in the back of the case. The Apache Kid had been known to be in the area of the Saunders ranch at the time of his demise.

In addition, the book reports that an Apache woman was wounded in the shoot out. The book continues to describe the events of her search for food. She was eventually captured at the Monica Tanks cabin fifty miles south of San Marcial. When questioned she confirmed that her husband was the Apache Kid and he had been killed at the head of the San Mateo Canyon. She was returned to the Mescalero Apache tribe. The tribe was informed of the situation and her two children were taken into the tribe.

Source: Website      Click
Related: William A. Holmes Ben Williams
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