Deputy Sheriff Thomas Chesley Bedford, Jr.

Deputy Sheriff Thomas Chesley Bedford, Jr.

Lincoln County Sheriff's Office, New Mexico

End of Watch Monday, October 8, 1979

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Thomas Chesley Bedford, Jr.

Deputy Bedford was shot and killed while investigating several burglaries in the Nogal area of Lincoln County. He encountered two men, one of whom was carrying a rifle, and stopped to question them. During the questioning he had the men put the rifle on the hood of his patrol car.

As he questioned them one of the men pulled a handgun from the other man's pocket and shot Deputy Bedford. After Deputy Beford fell the suspect stood over him and shot him four more times. The two escaped but were both eventually apprehended. They were convicted of capital murder and sentenced to life in prison.

Deputy Bedford had only served with the agency for a short time. He was survived by his wife and two children. A sheriff's department substation was named in memory of Deputy Bedford.


  • Age 30
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge L-8

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life


Most Recent Reflection

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Rest in peace Deputy Sheriff Bedford.

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

October 12, 2021

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