Private Grover Scott Russell

Private Grover Scott Russell

Texas Rangers, Texas

End of Watch Monday, June 23, 1913

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Grover Scott Russell

Captain John R. Hughes assigned Private Grover Russell to accompany El Paso County Deputy Sheriff W. H. Garlick to serve a warrant for arrest on Manuel Guaderrama for rustling. The Guaderrama clan was well known to law enforcement. The two lawmen went to a business (store and saloon) owned by Manuel and his brother, Juan, in an unincorporated industrial area called Smeltertown. To avoid arousing suspicion, the officers entered under the pretext of buying tobacco.

Juan and his mother, Marina, were the only people in the store. Unexpectedly, Private Russell was smashed in the head with an axe handle by Marina. Juan pulled a Lugar and killed both Russell and Garlick. He pulled down the curtain and hacked at the fallen officer's heads with a hatchet. Juan discovered he had accidentally shot and mortally wounded his mother. Juan's wife arrived and removed both officer's six gun's and Russell's gun belt. They called police and reported the officers were drunk and had struck his mother.

Rangers believed the Guaderrama clan planned the murders in revenge for the rustling investigation. Thirteen members of the clan were arrested. Seven were no billed by the grand jury and six, including Juan, were indicted for murder. The clan retained top legal talent. Five were tried on January 13, 1914, but the jury deadlocked. Rangers and deputies raised funds to aid the district attorney in the second trial. Unfortunately by the June 1915 trial, only Juan Guaderrama was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 5 years in prison.

Private Scott Russell was 25 years old and single. He was buried in the East Memorial Cemetery in Stephenville in Erath County in central Texas. He had been a Texas Ranger only 8 months.


  • Age 25
  • Tour 8 months, 3 weeks
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; Luger
  • Offender Juan Guaderrama

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No passage of time will ever erase your memory, service and sacrifice, and rest in peace knowing that you will always be remembered.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

June 23, 2020

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