The infamous Doc Holliday was arrested in downtown Denver on May 14, 1882 by two Arapahoe County Deputy Sheriffs. He was arrested
by Deputy Sheriff Charles T. Linton and Deputy Sheriff Barney Cutler. Holliday was arrested for murdering a man in Utah named
Harry White. The deputies acted on information supplied by Perry Mallen who claimed to be a deputy sheriff from California.
All claims by Mallen later proved to be false.
These events started a feud between the two major Denver newspapers. One sided with Doc Holliday while the other portrayed
him as a murdering coward. As the newspaper war heated up, Sheriff Michael Spangler wired Tucson to see if they wanted Doc
on murder charges stemming from the famous "OK Corral" gunfight which occurred in October 1881. Arizona did want Doc Holliday
on murder charges.
At the request of Doc Holliday, Bat Masterson traveled from Trinidad to Denver. At this time, Masterson was working for the
Las Animas County Sheriff's Office and running a gambling hall. Masterson knew any Colorado charges would take precedence
over any out-of-state charges, including murder. So, Bat had a warrant issued for Doc Holliday's arrest on a gambling charge
that allegedly happened in Pueblo.
Judge Elliot released Doc into Masterson's custody on May 23, 1882. Immediately, Deputy Linton served Doc with a murder warrant
regarding the death of Frank Stillwell in Arizona. He was then placed back in jail. Another hearing was scheduled to settle
the extradition to Arizona. Governor Pitkin intervened and ruled the extradition papers were improperly drawn and ordered
Holliday's release. Holliday proceeded to Pueblo where his gambling charge was repeatedly continued in court until it was
forgotten. Doc drifted around Colorado until settling in Glenwood Springs where he died in bed in November 1887.
Although well-known as a lawman, William Barclay Masterson, better known as "Bat," was more frequently employed as a gambler
and fight promoter. He called Denver his home from the late 1800s to about 1902. During this time, he served as an Arapahoe
County Deputy Sheriff. His longest time served was from Dec. 5, 1896 to Aug. 25, 1897. He also served sporadically at other
times, being sworn in as a special deputy according to county records.
Bat engaged in his last known gunfight while acting as an Arapahoe County Deputy Sheriff. On April 6, 1897, he went to a polling
booth at 18th and Larimer streets on a report that one candidate's judges had thrown the challenger's judges from the polling
place. Upon his arrival, Bat Masterson found this to be the case. He ordered the ballot counting to cease immediately. Tim
Connors, a booth official, opposed this and pulled a gun. Masterson fired his gun hitting another booth official in the hand.
That caused Connors to re-think his plan and he dropped his gun. The other judges were allowed back into the polling booth
where the vote counting continued without further incident. Bat Masterson died October 25, 1921, as he sat at his desk writing
the sports column for the telegraph Newspaper in New York City.
David J. Cook
David Cook was one of the most famous lawmen in the Rocky Mountain Region. During his career he was a detective for the Army,
Denver City Marshall, Deputy U.S. Marshall, Arapahoe County Sheriff and General of the Colorado Militia. Cook started the
Rocky Mountain Detective Association - the first formal network of law enforcement officers west of the Mississippi. This
association operated throughout the western region, aiding lawmen from one city to another for more than 35 years.
According to historians, he arrested more than 3,000 criminals during his career, with 50 of them being murderers. He served
for eight years as Sheriff. His terms of office were from 1869 through 1872 and 1875 through 1878. Cook wrote a book about
his career as a lawman titled "Hands Up". It was originally published in 1882. This book became a bestseller in the late 1800s.
General Cook died peacefully on April 29, 1907.
Undersheriff Ben Goorman 03/27/16 - 06/20/45
Undersheriff Ben Goorman gave his life in the line of duty as an Arapahoe County Deputy Sheriff in June 1945. Undersheriff
Goorman and Englewood Police Chief Jess Briddle were searching the room of a theft suspect on June 19, 1945. They were searching
the basement in a rooming house at 343 West Alamo Ave. The room was rented by Wayne Simpson. Simpson was a 22-year-old ex-convict
who recently moved to Littleton. Simpson was suspected of being involved in numerous auto part thefts in Englewood and unincorporated
As the officers searched the room, Simpson suddenly pulled a .38 caliber handgun and fired at Undersheriff Goorman. Goorman
was hit in the chest and fell to the floor. Chief Briddle was able to shoot Simpson twice. Simpson fell to the floor as Chief
Bridle grabbed the fallen Undersheriff and took him upstairs. Simpson, although seriously wounded, was able to shoot himself
in the head with his own gun. The wound proved to be fatal.
Undersheriff Goorman was rushed to Porter Sanitarium in a State Patrol car, where he died the next day. He left a wife and
three children. He served as an Englewood Police Officer before being appointed Undersheriff by Sheriff "Chick" Foster. He
was 33-years old when he died.
Sheriff Sullivan ensured Undersheriff Goorman's name was included on the National Law Enforcement Memorial in Washington,
D.C. His name also is on the State Memorial at Camp George West in Golden.