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Deputy Sheriff Antonio Lino Valdez | San Miguel County Sheriff's Department, New Mexico San Miguel County Sheriff's Department, New Mexico

Deputy Sheriff

Antonio Lino Valdez

San Miguel County Sheriff's Department, New Mexico

End of Watch: Monday, April 5, 1880

Bio & Incident Details

Age: Not available

Tour: Not available

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Incident Date: 4/5/1880

Weapon: Gun; Unknown type

Suspect: One sentenced to death, but escaped

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Deputy Sheriff Antonio Valdez was shot and killed during the escape attempt of a murder suspect. Two men entered the West Las Vegas Jail and asked to visit the suspect. As Sheriff Valdez brought the men to see the murder suspect one of the two men drew a gun and ordered Sheriff Valdez to hand over the keys to the cells. When he refused they shot him and took the keys. They passed the keys over to the murder suspect, but he declined to leave and stayed in his cell. The two men then fled.

Two separate posses searched for the killers of Sheriff Valdez. On December 24, 1880 one of the suspects rode into Stinking Springs with the notorious outlaw Billy the Kid, where he was captured along with Billy the Kid and his gang.

The captured suspect was sentenced to death for killing Sheriff Valdez, but escaped before he could be executed. In 1886 the suspect was beaten to death by an angry mob after he shot and killed two men over a card game. It is believed the suspect was a member of the Billy the Kid Gang which brought about five deaths. An accomplice of the suspect also killed a town marshal in 1884.

It is believed that the second suspect died in 1882.

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Related Line of Duty Deaths

Sheriff William Brady
Lincoln County Sheriff's Department, New Mexico
End of Watch: Monday, April 1, 1878
Cause: Gunfire

Assistant City Marshal Thomas C. Nixon
Dodge City Police Department, Kansas
End of Watch: Monday, July 21, 1884
Cause: Gunfire

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