New evidence has surfaced on the man who killed the man who killed Billy the Kid.
Historians have long wondered what happened to Wayne Brazel. He represents, in the Old West World, a position similar to Lee Harvey Oswald: part assassin-part patsy, with plenty of conspiracy theories filling the spaces in between.
Angelica found a report stating that "the deceased [Pat Garrett] came to his death by gunshot wounds inflicted by one Wayne Brazel."
Back in February, I got an email from Scott Lane, who told me I could find out the answers to these questions if I wanted to meet a woman who is related to Wayne Brazel.
Turns out she had read one of my True West Moments which ran in the Arizona Republic and the email said if I wanted to know what happened to the alleged killer of Pat Garrett I should come and meet her. The 82-year-old woman, Emalee (also styled as Emily on some of her documents) Brazell Price, and her two friends live on the west side of Phoenix and I live in Cave Creek, north of Phoenix, so we settled on a place in between, at The Texas Roadhouse in Metrocenter. I met them after I got off work on February 27 at 6:15 p.m.
Emalee says Wayne Brazell died in 1936 of typhoid. He is buried in Barton Cemetery (near Edgewood, New Mexico). She also related that Wayne was working on a Conservation type project (The CCC Boys, they were called) at the time of his passing. If true, this fills in a major gap in our knowledge of what happened to the man who allegedly killed the man who killed Billy the Kid. She also told me that Wayne spent time in Yuma prison and she thought it was related to the Garrett killing. This seems odd since he was acquitted in New Mexico and it is doubtful any charges would carry over to Arizona, but that is the family story.
And, by the way, Garrett was shot in the back of the head while urinating beside his buggy, which prompted this quip from Garrett's biographer:
"It's the only time in history a man has been assassinated while urinating that the defendant claimed self-defense and got off!"
—Historian Leon Metz
Postscript: Okay, here is an update from historian Lauren Kormylo: