This fall, October 18-20, the Arizona Chapter of “The Usual Suspects” Motorcycle Club is sponsoring the “Devil’s Oven” tribute ride for Arizona’s 2011 fallen law enforcement officers, and benefit for their families.
One of the officers that is being honored is Deputy Sheriff John D. Garnett of Greenlee County who was killed in the line of duty in 1911.
The Suspects didn’t have a lot of information on Deputy Garnett, and just out of curiosity I did a little searching. I turned up an image of an old Greenlee County newspaper article about Garnett’s death.
It looks like Garnett was coming to the aid of a fellow officer who was in dire straights. This is a good reminder of the danger faced by our officers every day, even 100 years later. Many things about the job have changed, but this has not.
I’ve transcribed the article here, with a link to the image below.
KILLING AT CLIFTON
Results in the Death of
Deputy Sheriff Garnett and Mexican
As a result of an exchange of shots between Deputy Sheriff John D Garnett of Greenlee County and a Mexican named Ben Palomona at Clifton Sunday night, both were killed.
The killing was the result of the attempted arrest of Palomona by Deputy Sheriff Frank Ringgold. Palomona overpowered Ringgold and with some other Mexicans had severely beaten him over the head with his own gun leaving him badly wounded.
Deputy Sheriff Garnett started to make the arrest when Palomona drew his gun and shot the officer. Although mortally wounded Garnett drew his gun and shot Palomona killing him instantly.
Frank Ringgold is well known here having resided at Solomonville for several years. He is a brother-in-law of Will Parks who is in the cattle business in Graham and Greenlee counties.