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Murder of Two Roger Mills Co. Lawmen
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posted
from The Daily Ardmoreite, Ardmore,IT
Monday, May 28, 1906
HISTORICAL MURDER CASE
Final Chapter Being Enacted
Murder Committed in 1902
Guthrie, Okla., May 27. - Sheriff Elliott, who recently went to British Columbia, has wired here that the prisoner under arrest there is Sam Green, one of the men under indictment for murdering Sheriff Bullard and Deputy Sheriff Cogburn, in 1902. Extradition papers are being prepared at Washington, asking for the return of Green to Oklahoma. When arrested the prisoner gave his name as G. McGiven. He arrived at Vancouver in April from Portland, Oregon. Sheriff Elliott went to Portland, in September, 1905, and to North Dakota in August, 1904, when he was informed of the supposed arrest of Green and his co-partner, Pete Whitehead. Both trips, however, were wild goose chases, but the Vancouver prisoner is positively identified as Green.
The killing of Jack Bullard, sheriff of Roger Mills county and his deputy Cogburn, occurred in June, 1902, near Cheyenne. Pete Whitehead and the Green boys, Sam and Richard, with Mrs. Sam Green and a confederate named Otis Stuhl, were in hiding near Cheyenne, having in their possession a bunch of alleged stolen horses. Bullard learned of their whereabouts and with Cogburn went to arrest them. As they approached the underbrush, where Green and his partners were hiding, the latter opened fire on the officers, instantly killing Bullard and fatally injuring Cogburn.
All members of the Green-Whitehead gang made their escape, excepting Stuhl and Mrs. Sam Green. Following their arrest, the defense was made that Bullard and Cogburn had called the women of the gang thieves and outlaws, and that the members of the gang fired on the officers to protect the honor of their women. But little evidence was ever given this story, however.
 
Posts: 376 | Location: Oklahoma City, OK | Registered: Wed December 10 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Sheriff Bullard and Deputy Cogburn will be amoung the 35 Oklahoma fallen officer's names to be added to and dedicated on the National Law Enforcement Officer's Memorial in Washington, DC the evening of May 13, 2004.

Dennis L Lippe, Chairman
Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial, Inc.
PO Box 10776
Oklahoma City, OK 73140-1776
e-mail: OKLEMEMORIAL@aol.com
www.oklemem.com
 
Posts: 149 | Location: Oklahoma City, OK, USA | Registered: Wed February 04 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
<Old West>
posted
THE MARTYRS OF ROGER MILLS
{From the Enid Events}

The jury in the case of the Territory vs Otis Stull returned a verdict of not guilty Monday morning. The defendant was charged with being an accessory to the murder of Sheriff Bullard and Deputy Cogburn of Roger Mills County, last summer. The particulars of the crime are revolting and heinous.

Sam Green, Pete Whitehead, Otis Stull, Richard Greeen and Mrs. Green were camped nine miles east of Cheyenne, Roger Mills County, June 30, last. They were heavily armed. People in the neighborhood, taking them for bad characters, sent word to Sheriff Bullard to come out and investigate.

The Sheriff, who was one of the bravest and best men in Oklahoma, took Deputy Cogburn along and went to the Green camp. Upon arriving there they found a desperate lot of people. What happened after the sheriff and deputy arrived is locked in the bosom of his murderers, for no other witness heard or saw. At any rate, just as the sheriff and deputy were making preparations to go to town and procure warrants, some one of the gang shot Deputy Cogsburn (sic) in the back, killing him instantly. Seeing Cogburn dead and knowing his fate, Bullard pulled his gun and fired three times; but, while he was doing it, his body was being riddled with bullets from three assailants. In fact, they fired a perfect volley into him, killing him like a dog, his body falling beside that of his brave deputy.

Perceiving that the officers were dead, Sam Green and Pete Whitehead mounted their horses, rode away, and have never been captured. Otis Stull, Richard Green and Mrs. Green were arrested. Feelings naturally ran high in Roger Mills County, and why shouldn't it? Two citizens and officers had been killed like beasts. They attorneys for Stull did not desire a trial in Roger Mills and took a change of venue to Garfield County.

The evidence in the case against Stull was purely circumstantial. It would have been against Green or Whitehead. There were not witnesses. It could not be proved who killed Bullard and Cogburn; but, they were killed by the Green gang of murderers and that is well known.

Stull set up that he left just before the shooting commenced and was a quarter of a mile away. The prosecution proved almost conclusively from cartridges and tracks found that Stull went 60 yards to a gulch and from the gulch opened the firing which ended the lives of the brave men of Roger Mills.

Attorney (Moman) Pruiett, County Attorney Tracy and Lawyer Whittinghill established a conclusive chain of circumstantial evidence showing that Stull was ostensibly sent away by Whitehead, but that he stopped when out of sight and fired two shots which caused the Sheriff and Deputy to turn around; and, when they turned, Green and Whitehead shot them in the back. There is little doubt of this. For those who know Bullard and Cogburn say that they could never have been killed by two men face to face. The fact that they were both riddled in the back proves that they turned to meet an assailant in the rear.

But, a jury has acquitted Stull. They would have probably done the same were Green and Whitehead on trial, because there were no eye witnesses, and the tales invented by them would have seemed plausible, and lawyers would have wept when they pled for their lives.

Seeing the futility of trying a murderer, Attorney Tracy dismissed the cases against Mrs. Green and Richard Green and returned home to the people who were denied retribution.

Thus, two brave Americans, officers in the discharge of their duty, were shot down in cold blood, cut off with impunity; their loved ones weep for them and their lives are blighted because they are dead; the laws of civilization have been trampled upon; the rights of the people of Roger Mills County have been disregarded and outraged, yet there is no recompense meted to the perpetrators of the most dastardly crime in the history of Oklahoma.

The jury system is a mockery, jurymen being swayed by their prejudices and sentiments and not by the law and the facts. A jury will turn loose a self-confessed murderer or theif because of sentimentality and convict an innocent devil who is not expecting to be convicted and who has not employed spell binders to defend him.

- - - - The Cheyenne Sunbeam January 9, 1903
 
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<Old West>
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History of Roger Mills County
(Chapter 9 pp. 37-40)

"The Killing of Sheriff Bullard"

On July 2, 1902, there occurred on Dead Indian Creek, about eight miles north of Cheyenne, a tragedy which should be recorded at length in this book. The incident referred to is the killing of Sheriff Andrew Jackson Bullard and his Deputy, John Cogburn, by two suspicious characters named Green and Whitehead.

Many versions of the affair have been given by residents of the Dead Indian Settlement, but the writer, who was a resident of the county at that time has concluded that the story as was carried by the Cheyenne Sunbeam (newspaper) of July 4, 1902, comes about as near giving the facts in the case as can be recorded. We give the article as it was published at that time.

"This community was startled on Monday Evening last by the news that Sheriff A. J. Bullard and his Deputy, John Cogburn, had been killed on the head of Dead Indian Creek, between 5 and 6 o'clock P.M.

A posse left at once for the scene of the tragedy, headed by Deputy Sheriff Monroe.

It appears that during the day, several parties had come to town and notified Bullard of the presence of some suspicious characters, who were going about the Dead Indian Country, heavily armed and trying to dispose of saddles and other property. There were seven persons in the suspicious looking outfit, from men ranging in age from 18 to 40 and a woman and two children. The oldest man is the husband of the woman and the father of the two children. His name is Sam Green and he came recently from Woodward County, where he has been emplyed on a ranch about twenty miles north of Woodward. He is about five feet eight inches tall and weighs two hundred pounds or less, has sandy mustache, yellowish hair and red face. Another of the men named Pete Whitehead was twenty three years old, weight about 160 or 170, height 5ft 8in black hair and complexion, clean shaved.

Two younger men are now in jail, also a woman.

On information that he had received, Sheriff Bullard and is deputy went out to investigate. They reached the camp and were in conversation with Green and Whitehead, when a man named Frank Doan rode up. Doan says that the Sheriff took him a short distance from the camp and asked him if he knew anything abou the outfit. As they were talking, both Doan and Bullard saw Whitehead hand a six-shooter to Green, and the two young men disappeard over a ridge. After leaving Mr. Bullard, Doan had gone about a quarter of a mile, when he heard a number of shots all fired in about five seconds, followed by a single shot about a minute later. From where Doan was, he could see the smoke and also saw two men fall. He also saw a man running toward his horse. Other people saw two men mount and ride away in a northerly direction.

When the neighbors gathered at the scene of the shooting, a terrible sight presented itself. Sheriff Bullard was lying dead with eleven bullet wounds in his body and holding his six-shooter in his hand, from which two shots had been fired. Four of the wounds entered from the back, six from the front and one ranging downward from the head. His deputy received one shot only and that from the back. He was evidently sitting on the wagon tongue when he received this shot which proved immediately fatal, he not having time to use his gun before expireing (sic).

From the range of the bullets, it is supposed that the first shot - the one proving fatal to Cogburn - was fired from a draw by some one hidden there, probably the young men who rode off while Bullard was talking to Doan. Mr. Bullard must have received the fatal shots before he could get to use his gun as the men firing at him were not more than six feet from him.

The presumption is that Green and Whitehead knew Bullard was an officer and when they saw him take Doan off and talk to him, they concluded that he had sent for help. To save themselves from capture, they evidently concluded to murder both men before help could arrive and take their chances of getting away.

If this is the case, they must have been desparadoes of the worst type and no chances should be taken if they are again caught up with. Their shift should be swift and sure.

In the death of Bullard and his deputy, the county has been robbed of two of its best citizens and officers, by murderers of the lowest type. No man can say aught against eithers character as a man or as an officer. They were such men as all good citizens are proud of and their untimely end caused such sorrow as was never before evidenced in our community. Both men have wives and to them is extended a heartfelt sympathy in this their hour of affliction. Their protectors are taken from them by ruthless hands but they have the comfort of knowing that they died as men in discharge of a dangerous public duty and that their memory will be revered by all law abiding citizens.

The funeral took place Wednesday, that of Bullard being under the management of the Masonic Lodge of this place. An immense crowd was present and all business was suspended during the interrement.

The outlaws had in their possession: three wagons, twenty-one head of horse, fourteen head of cattle, and a lot of miscellaneous articles.

Examination showed that Sheriff Bullard had been shot by three different calibred pistols, or guns, some of which were unusually large. One fired an explosive bullet.

Before making their escape, the murderers took Sheriff Bullards rifle from his horse and took it with them. The last that was known of them, they spent the night on the Fred Burnham Farm near Buttler. Mr. Burnham invited them to come into the house to sleep but they refused and slept in a wagon, leaving before daylight the next morning.

Three horses were found in their possession, have been taken in charge as property of Mr. Hext of Greer County, one of them was a racer. One of the steers is branded the 'hash knife' and is undoubtedly stolen property. Only two animals in the bunch were branded alike.

The City of Cheyenne has made up several hundred dollars to offer as a reward for the murderers capture and conviction. Our County Commissioners should offer a large reward and the matter should be taken up with the Governor to induce him to do the same.

Altho forty-five years have passed, the killers have never been apprehended and they are probably dead by this time. However, a short time after the killing, Temple Houston, Son of Sam Houston founder of the Texas Republic, who was then at the height of his career and lived in Woodward came to Cheyenne and made an offer to the Roger Mills Authorities to bring in Green and Whitehead, if the County would grant them bond. This offer was refused and their associates, who were held in jail, were eventually released for lack of evidence.

So ends another chapter in the history of Roger Mills County.
 
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<Guest>
posted
For an excellent, detailed description of the killing of Sheriff Bullard and Deputy Cogburn of Roger Mills County (Okla.), please read Ken Butler's book "OKLAHOMA RENEGADES: THEIR DEEDS AND MISDEEDS", Chapter 15 entitled "Murder on Dead Indian Creek" (pp. 107-112).
 
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<Robbi Tomsen>
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I believe that the Sam green mentioned is my maternal grandfather His brother was Richard. The Mrs. Green woulhd have been Minnjie Hildebrand Green and the two children would be my grndmtoher Hazel May and her brother Charles (Charley) Green. sam was born in Tx and the children were born in Kingfisher county OK. I would like to know how to find a death date for Sam and his brother Richard. My grandmother said she never saw her father gain after this event although he continued to send $ for some time to her mother through her Uncle Richard for some time. Her mother remarried a Reynolds so I assume thte Sam recieved a well deserved hanging but can find no record beyond what I have found here. Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you.robbiwhoelse@mstar2.net
 
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