In 1887, when a young first sergeant of scouts at San Carlos Agency left his duty station to avenge his grandfathers murder in a tribal manner, he began an inextricable journey through three legal systems: Apache, military, and civil. Though his trials would not end in justice, each played its part in transforming Apache Kid into Arizonas legendary renegade of renegades. Tried for desertion and mutiny under military law, Kid escaped death by firing squad when his sentence was remitted on appeal. Civil authorities then charged and convicted Kid for assault to murder and sentenced him to seven years in the Arizona Territorial Prison at Yuma. Though Kid spoke no more than seven hundred words at his court martial, Clare McKannas use of them in illuminating this legal odyssey is as compelling as Kids escape and legend.
Clare V. McKanna, Jr., teaches history at San Diego State University, specializes in Native American history, and is the author of White Justice in Arizona: Apache Murder Trials in the Nineteenth Century (TTUP, 2005) as well as Race and Homicide in Nineteenth-Century California and The Trial of ""Indian Joe."" He lives in San Diego, California. Sidney L. Harring, professor, CUNY School of Law, has written numerous articles and books on Native American law, indigenous rights, and the social history of American law, including White Man's Law: Native People in Nineteenth Century Canadian Jurisprudence, a finalist for the Donner Prize.