MARSHAL ALEXANDER YOUNG
With James McCoy gone, the trustees chose Alexander Young as San Diego’s new top lawman. If Young came to the office expecting to only be a law enforcer, he was quickly disappointed. On the first day of taking his oath of office, the board told the new marshal his top priority was the enforcement of the health code and to see to it the Smallpox epidemic of a few years back didn’t return.
He was also tasked with building a hospital and enforcing quarantine orders. If the Marshal wanted to do any law enforcement, he would have to contract himself on an as needed basis, but the trustees would not pay him for it.
On August 15, 1869, Young made the news when he spent three days tracking cattle rustlers into the backcountry. Apparently the rustlers had too big of a head start and all he found were remains of slaughtered cows. The story did generate several letters to the editor though. Two local ranchers questioned, “why are we paying taxes if the Marshal has to be hired out to enforce the law?”
By September 1869 Marshal Young had enough and handed in his resignation.
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