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Pat Garrett.

Pat Garrett Killed Here

Field review by the editors.

Las Cruces, New Mexico

Pat Garrett held a number of jobs in his life, but he's best known as the New Mexico sheriff who killed Billy the Kid on July 14, 1881. His fame, however, didn't last, and on February 29, 1908, Garrett was in his buckboard, bumping along outside of Las Cruces in a desert arroyo (which was used as a road), when he was shot dead.

Far from being a revenge murder for Billy's death -- or for Garrett's cover-up of the death (depending on which Billy story you believe) -- Garrett was killed over a financial dispute about goats. The former lawman's reputation had fallen so low that, after a one-day trial, a jury acquitted his confessed killer.

In 1940 Garrett's son, Jarvis Garrett, marked the spot with a blob of concrete, scratching his father's name and death date into the wet cement. It's still there, out in the desert, now surrounded by stones left by modern well-wishers.

Also see: Billy the Kid: Baddest Punk in the West

Pat Garrett Killed Here

5700 Mesa Grande Drive, Las Cruces, NM
Bring water and a hat in hot weather. From Bataan Memorial Hwy turn south at the stoplight onto Mesa Grande Drive, toward Onate High School. Drive past the high school on the left. Park at the south end of the large parking lot. From the lot's southwest corner, follow the power line right-of-way easement into the desert, straight south for about a mile. The blob-marker will be on the right, at the base of a power pole, just after the path crosses an arroyo, and just before you reach a small hill.
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Pat Garrett Murder Site SignPat Garrett Murder Site Sign, Las Cruces, NM - 1 mi.
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In the region:
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