Gale Cooper


The author is a Harvard educated, M.D. psychiatrist specializing in murder case consultation, who moved from a Beverly Hills, California, practice to a New Mexico mountain, to write her Billy the Kid docufiction novel, Joy of the Birds. It utilized research of 40,000 pages of archival documents and books to capture the star-crossed romance of Billy Bonney and Paulita Maxwell against the backdrop of the Lincoln County War: an unsung freedom fight against robber barons of the Santa Fe Ring.

Next to be written was a non-fiction exposé of a Billy the Kid historic/forensic hoax, arguably the most elaborate of its kind, and almost uncrackable because of protection by the modern New Mexico Santa Fe Ring. Its title is MegaHoax: The Strange Plot to Exhume Billy the Kid and Become President. The hoaxers’ attention-grabbing claim was that Sheriff Pat Garrett did not kill Billy the Kid, but murdered an innocent victim in his stead to allow him to escape. To solve that "murder," the hoaxers claimed to use forensic DNA and CSI investigations - but it was all brilliantly faked.

The book that followed is the non-fiction Billy the Kid’s Pretenders: "Brushy Bill" and John Miller. It is a meticulous debunking of those old time pretenders, and of the modern Billy the Kid Case hoaxers, who built their historical fabrications on the survival claims of the pretenders.

Gale Cooper’s goal in her writings is to reclaim and protect the true and magnificent history of Billy the Kid and the Lincoln County War. And several more non-fiction books on intriguing facets are in the process of completion.