Patrolman James M. Sides

Patrolman James M. Sides

Alamogordo Police Department, New Mexico

End of Watch Monday, August 14, 2023

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James M. Sides

Patrolman Jim Sides succumbed to gunshot wounds he received on April 3, 1984.

At 9:45 a.m., Patrolman Sides and two other officers responded to a trespassing call at 2216 Pecan Drive in Alamogordo. When officers arrived, the subject exited the house and fired at the officers. Patrolman Sides was struck in the head and broke his leg while falling. Another officer sustained two bullet wounds to his cheek. The subject fled the house and barricaded himself in the backyard of another residence. When he fired at responding officers, they returned fire, killing the subject.

The subject was a parolee who had been convicted of aggravated battery of a police officer.

Patrolman Sides was transported to Las Cruces Memorial Hospital where he underwent a seven-hour surgery to remove a bullet from his temple. Due to his injuries, he retired in October 1984. His death on August 14, 2023, was attributed to the brain injury he received when he was shot.

Patrolman Sides had served with the Alamogordo Department of Public Safety, now named the Alamogordo Police Department, for three years and previously served with the New Mexico State Police for five years and the Hildago County Sheriff's Office for one year. He is survived by his wife and two children.


  • Age 68
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge 40

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Tuesday, April 3, 1984
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Shot and killed

parolee, trespasser

Most Recent Reflection

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Lord God of unfailing love, to those families in our beloved nation, the United States of America, who are suffering in the wake of the loss of a law enforcement family member, help us to provide support. Allow us to be their rock and fortress in a time of immense pain and uncertainty. Help us to keep them safe and nourished in their time of grief, suffering beside them as we move toward healing and reconciliation. Lord God, in Your compassionate mercy, hear my prayer. In Christ Jesus, Your beloved Son, and by His authority, I pray. Amen.

Holy Scripture References:

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons [children] of God.” [Matthew 5:9 ESV]

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” [Matthew 5:4 ESV]

Chaplain Steven R. Closs, DDiv, MSBS, NCCA, FCPO-USA
The Badge 183 Peacemakers Prayer Ministry
“Honoring America’s Fallen Peace Officers”
Merrimack, NH 03054

Captain Steven R. Closs (Ret.)
Nashua NH Police Department (1974-1998)

November 20, 2023

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