<![CDATA[One of the most infamous outlaws in the American Wild West, Billy the Kid killed for the first time on 17th August, 1877. The famed thief and gunfighter has since become one of the most well known figures from this tumultuous period of US history, remaining a source of controversy to this day. Born William Henry McCarty Jr. on 23rd November, 1859, in New York, little is known about Billy the Kid's youth. It is believed that his father died sometime during the American Civil War, disrupting the family life to the extent that Billy, his mother and younger brother moved around the United States frequently over the next few years. When Billy the Kid was fifteen his mother died from tuberculosis. Living in New Mexico, Billy and his brother embarked on a life of petty theft in order to survive. At some point Billy was jailed for a robbery - although doubts remain over whether he was truly guilty of the crime he'd been accused of - and he fled from his home in New Mexico to Arizona. For several months Billy the Kid tramped around the state in search of employment, occasionally working temporarily as a ranch hand and sheep herder. In 1877 he took on a job as a ranch handler at the Camp Grant Army Post in Arizona. It was here that Billy the Kid killed his first victim, although the circumstances of the killing lead some to argue that it highlights a pattern of Billy being far from a cold blooded killer, and in fact a victim of circumstance. Accounts suggest a burly, heavy set black smith named Frank "Windy" Cahill, who also worked at Camp Grant, had taken a dislike to Billy. Their long running dispute broke out into a fight on 17th August, 1877, and, overpowered by the larger man, Billy took out his pistol and shot him. Whether it was an act of self defense or excessive retaliation, Cahill died the following day and Billy fled Arizona to escape punishment. Billy the Kid eventually made his way to Lincoln County, New Mexico, where his reputation as a gunslinger and dangerous outlaw was formed. In 1876 a business rivalry between two major cattle and banking concerns, which would soon escalate into what is now known as the Lincoln County War, had started brewing. Billy the Kid was recruited by John Tunstall, the head of one of the businesses, to aid in the dispute. In 1878 Tunstall was killed by a gang of men from the rival business, and Billy the Kid swore to take revenge on those involved in the murder, claiming Tunstall, "was the only man that ever treated me like I was a free-born and white." Billy joined the Regulators, a private army set up by Tunstall's business associates, and over the next few months the men set out on a rampage against those associated with the rival business. Although other outlaws in the Wild West killed more people than Billy the Kid did, he gained a reputation as a ruthless, cold blooded killer. This was a consequence of both his youthful, blue-eyed image which seemed to contrast so sharply with his life as an outlaw, and a sensationalised biography of Billy which was written by Sheriff Garrett in 1881, the same Sheriff who had hunted down and killed Billy earlier that year. Billy the Kid's life has become immortalised through various accounts which made him a legend of the American Frontier. For some, he was a ruthless, cold blooded murderer, symptomatic of the brutal lawlessness of the Wild West. For others, the events of the death of Frank Cahill, and the circumstances of his later involvement in the Lincoln County War, show that Billy was nothing more than a victim of his time, an individual reacting to the extreme circumstances he found himself in. ]]>
Brian Keith O'Hara
Windy Cahill was 6’2″ and 225 lbs. and a bully. He liked picking fights, especially of people a lot younger and smaller than he was. Henry “Billy the Kid” McCarty was a 5’8″ and 138 lbs. orphan. Windy Cahill beat the crap out of Henry repeatedly. He didn’t need a reason and never offered one. He just didn’t like the orphan and went out of his way to show it by tormenting and terrorizing the kid. By the way, almost historians disagree with Henry being born in 1859. Pat Garrett said that so Henry would have been 21 when he shot the Kid. Henry was probably born in late 1860 or early 1861.
Judge Judy had a similar case:
A 16-year-old bully and athlete weighing about 200lbs was on the Judge Judy Show. He had been waiting for a train at a train station when he noticed a slight, skinny kid of 15 with his girlfriend on the platform. He walked up to the boy and said that he heard “you’ve been talking trash about me”. The boy responded, no, he wasn’t, that he didn’t even know who the bully was. Then the bully sucker punched the boy and sent him to the ground. He then proceeded to kick the boy repeatedly. What he didn’t know was that the girlfriend had a knife in her purse for self protection. She told the bully to stop. He wouldn’t and she stabbed him in the chest. Both boys were taken to the hospital, the bully needed surgery. Judge Judy, said that if you are a bully, then you should be afraid that anyone could have a knife or gun to defend themselves.
Judge Judy gave the boy who had been beaten $5,000 and the bully nothing on his counter suit. The bully’s mother was shocked, but shouldn’t have been, because all he got was justice.