THE ABDUCTION OF DEPUTY SHERIFF JOE JOHNS



AUGUST 1932
Hideout Note: There have been many names given for Bonnie's aunt; one being "Elsie", other sources say
"Millie". Her husband's name was Melvin. Newspaper accounts at the time referred to her as Mrs. E.M. Stamps,
which could have been for Elsie Millie Stamps (E.M. Stamps) I will leave it at that until proven otherwise.

Shortly after the Stringtown incident, Bonnie, Clyde and Raymond Hamilton
turned up in Carlsbad, New Mexico to spend some time with Bonnie's aunt, Mrs.
E. M. Stamps. They arrived in town in a new car which they had recently stolen.

In those days, anyone driving around in a new car, especially young strangers in
a small farm community would be subject to a second glance. Their presence there
had attracted the attention of Eddy County Deputy Sheriff Joe Johns who did a
make on the car's license number and discovered it stolen. This was on a Saturday.

On Sunday, the following day, they were preparing to make homemade ice cream at
the Stamps farm so Raymond went into town to get some ice. Johns saw the car
again and followed it back to the Stamps place, and went to the door. Bonnie
had answered his knock and he had asked her who the car belonged to. Bonnie coyly
told him that it belonged to a couple of boys staying there and said that they
were getting dressed and that she would go get them. While waiting for them to
come out, he decided to go over to the car and investigate further. First, he had
peered in through the windows of the locked car and as he was trying to open the
trunk in which the guns were stored, So as to be out of sight of Bonnie's unsuspecting
aunt, Clyde armed himself with a shotgun he had found in the house and he and
Raymond ran around the side of the house and had overtaken the surprised lawman
and relieved him of his service revolver. Whether intentionally or by accident,
the shotgun discharged, just missing the officer's head and blowing away his hat.

Clyde called to Bonnie to get in the car and together they all took off, taking
the Deputy Sheriff with them. They drove to San Antonio before releasing their
hostage. Word had gotten around town that Johns had been killed by his abductors
and when the body of a hitchhiker was discovered on the roadside it was thought
to be the body of the missing lawman. The town was relieved when they got word
that the lawman had been released unharmed. 



HOME OF BONNIE'S AUNT
Argus file photo
This is where it happened




HOME DEMOLISHED




NOW JUST A VACANT LOT

Driveway still visible, left of trash can. Home was nestled between the trees shown here




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