Author Archives: Slota Daniel

Battle in a Box Canyon: The Lugo Case of 1851

Battle in a Box Canyon: The Lugo Case of 1851

Box Canyon


Two young members of the Lugo family, a prominent local Californio family, are arrested for the murder of two men in El Cajon Pass in 1851. A bandit gang was offered a devil’s bargain to free them, while the criminal justice system botched the case.

This is the basis of “Battle in a Box Canyon: The Lugo Case of 1851”, a presentation by Paul Spitzzeri in the Assembly Room of A.K. Smiley Public Library on Sunday, June 5 at 2pm. The program will present multiple points of view while exploring the facts of the 1851 legal case, touching on topics like ethnic tensions, perceptions of powerless police and courts, community and personal retribution, and a frontier Southern California struggling with law and order. Join us and learn of this fascinating case and its dramatic ending in San Timoteo Canyon!

The presentation is free and open to the public. For further information, please contact the Library’s Heritage Room at (909)798-7632.

Read More »