Pat Garrett

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Originally from Alabama, Pat Garrett was appointed to serve as Lincoln County’s Sherriff in 1880. Prior to his service as sheriff, he had worked as a cowboy in Texas. He also had prior dealings with Billy the Kid. As sheriff, however, his main task was to bring Billy the Kid to justice for his role in the Lincoln County War. After months of pursuit and tense gun battles, Garrett arrested Billy at Stinking Springs (near present-day Taiban, New Mexico). Billy escaped his imprisonment in Lincoln by killing two of Garrett’s deputies. On July 14, 1881, Garrett located Billy the Kid at Fort Sumner in the residence of his love interest, Paulita Maxwell. Garrett took Billy by surprise at the Maxwell residence and killed the infamous outlaw. After he killed Billy the Kid, Garrett became famous. Yet he was unable to secure reelection as Lincoln County Sherriff. He later served as Doña Ana County Sheriff and he wrote a biography of Billy the Kid: “The Authentic Life of Billy the Kid.”