gbsteve (gbsteve) wrote,


The Officer Down Memorial Page has this to say about Deputy Sheriff James Carlysle of Lincoln County Sheriff's Department who was shot whilst chasing Billy the Kid on Saturday, November 27, 1880
Incident Details
Cause of Death: Gunfire (Accidental)
Date of Incident: Saturday, November 27, 1880
Weapon Used: Gun; Unknown type
Suspect Info: Shot and killed at a later date

Deputy Carlysle was shot and killed after leading a posse to capture the notorious Billy the Kid and his gang. After the gang had fired shots an another deputy, Deputy Carlysle lead a posse on a 40 mile chase.

Deputy Carlysle entered the saloon where Billy the Kid and his gang were hiding to talk with them. In exchange one of Billy the Kid's gang was taken hostage by Deputy Carlysle's posse. After Deputy Carlysle did not return the posse threatened to kill their hostage if Deputy Carlysle was not returned. A shot was fired and Deputy Carlysle, thinking the posse had just killed their hostage, jumped from the window of the saloon, only to be shot by members of his own posse who mistook him for one of the outlaws.
Of course, it was for Carlysle's murder than McCarty was eventually condemned. The Kid was hardly an angel, having killed eight men, but much of it was about being caught in political machinations that resulted from the Lincoln County War. I've met the current Sherrif of Lincoln, NM. He's a nice guy.

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