With Badges and Bullets
John W. Davis’s book details the trial of Tom Horn for the murder of a fourteen-year-old boy. The story began on July 18, 1901, when Willie Nickell was shot by a gunman lying in ambush; the killer was apparently after Willie’s father, who had brought sheep into the area. Six months later Tom Horn was arrested. The trial pitted the Laramie County district attorney against a crack team of defense lawyers hired by big cattlemen. Against all predictions, the jury found Horn guilty of first-degree murder. Despite appeals that went all the way to the state supreme court and the governor, Horn was hanged in Cheyenne in 1903.