|Posted by [email protected] on July 25, 2011 at 3:07 AM||comments (2)|
Billy the Kid is a veryimportant part of New Mexico history. I love to visit New Mexicoquite often -- and I love New Mexico. I belong to the Billy the Kid Outlaw Gang, which I also love, and this article is not reflective ofthe BTKOG, but, rather, the views of myself and the Billy the KidMuseum of Canton, Texas.
There are two issuesrelevant to BTK that are active today, and I wish to express my viewson them as follows:
There is a movement to re-try BTK again for the murder of Sheriff Brady. This is a moot issue -- and a waste of time. It is true that Billy the Kid was promised a pardon then -- and should have been given one -- as promised, in my opinion. But, let's be realistic -- he was an accomplice to the crime -- at least, and could easily be convicted of murder, whether he killed Brady or not, because he was there, he was shooting a gun, and he was deeply and actively involved. When BTK made his famous escape from the Lincoln County Jail, he did kill 2 lawmen. These two murders were made in the cause of self-preservation -- and, probably most of us would kill to escape death -- therefor, many of us can relate to this daring escape. However, please be realistic -- These two murders were two murders of two lawmen -- clear-cut. Billy the Kid was guilty of murder -- so a retroactive trial to try him for the murder of Sheriff Brady is irrelevant, unnecessary, and moot.
There is a movement to pardon Billy the Kid. This is a two-sided issue, as follows:
I would never support a pardon for a Billy the Kid who was convicted of the murder of Sheriff Brady (right or wrong), and then who (regardless of the situation) killed, for sure, two more lawmen in his jail escape. It is beyond my thinking to believe that anyone would waste his or her time applying for a re-trial of BTK for the murder of Brady. BTK negated this with the two murders in his escape.
However, the other side of this issue is interesting. I would, and do, fully support a Pardon of Billy the Kid who did not die in 1881, but, in a secret deal, escaped and lived a basically decent and law-abiding life for 69 more years -- and who died under the alias Brushy Bill Roberts in Hico, Texas. There are several affidavits of people who knew Billy the Kid on or before 1881, and those who swore that Brushy Bill was, in fact, the Billy the Kid. Mrs. Martile Able attested to it in the Herald Post November 25, 1950 ("Woman Says Billy the Kid Visited Here in July.") And Severo Gallegos who attested to it in the El Paso Times November 26, 1950 ("Billy Visited Him in April, Says Gallegos.") Both articles are enclosed. It is time for New Mexico to admit the truth -- Billy the Kid did not die in 1881, but, rather, in 1950.
I hereby beseech the Honorable Benjamin B. Rios to request that the New Mexico Legislaturepass a bill to pardon Billy the Kid who lived 69 years as a decentcitizen, and, who, in old age, seeking to make amends with himselfand his Maker, was denied a pardon by Governor Mabry in 1950.Governor Lew Wallace should have given BTK a pardon as promised.Then, the two murders in April, 1881 would not have happened.Governor Mabry should have given BTK a pardon in 1950 for 69 years ofdecent living. Now, it is the time for New Mexico to correct itserrors of the past and grant Billy the Kid (1859-1950) a full pardon.
Dr. Jannay P. Valdez
Billy the Kid Museum ofCanton
Canton, Texas 75103