In the Post-World War II, in Los Angeles, a criminal shots and kills a police officer in the middle of the night. Without any leads, the chief of the LAPD assigns Sgt. Chuck Jones and Sgt. Marty Brennan to investigate the murder and apprehend the culprits. When the dealer of electronics devices, Paul Reeves, is caught selling a stolen projector, the police identifies the criminal, and connects him to other unsolved robberies. Using the witnesses of his heists, they draw their face, but the true identity of the smart and intelligent criminal is not disclosed. The perseverance of Sgt. Marty Brennan in his investigation gives a clue where he might live. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
From the Homicide Files of the Los Angeles Police.
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Did You Know?
Loosely based on the real-life 1946 crime spree of Erwin "Machine Gun" Walker (1918-1982). Unlike the character in the film, Walker was captured, tried and sentenced to death for first-degree murder. On April 14, 1949, two days before his scheduled execution, Walker attempted suicide and the execution was postponed. A psychiatric board pronounced him insane and he was sent to the Mendocino State Hospital for the next 12 years. Declared sane again in 1961, his sentence was commuted by the governor to life without parole. From 1970-74 he filed several motions to appeal his case, twice making it to the California Supreme Court. The second time the court vacated the "without parole" part of his sentence. Walker applied for and was granted parole in 1974. He then legally changed his name, worked as a chemist and died in 1982. See more
When Martin flees from his bungalow into the sewer system, the first shot shows him running in the sewer with a torch and a bag in his hand. This is the same shot as used earlier on in the film after he started robbing liquor stores. (In this later scene, he did not have a bag when he fled the bungalow nor when he entered the sewers.) See more
[referring to the composite sketch
They showed that picture to the inmates of jails and prisons, to men with a wide acquaintance among the cat burglars and the violence boys. Informers and con men and sharpshooters were quizzed. Those on the fringe of crime and those deep in the rackets. Many wanted to help; nobody could. No one in the underworld recognized that mysterious face. He was as unknown as if he had lived in the 16th Century.