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The Unknown Man (1951) - Plot Summary Poster

Plot Summary

  • Prominent attorney Brad Mason takes on the defense of Rudi Walchek, a young hit-man hoodlum accused of murder. Convinced of the youthful thug's innocence, Mason get him acquitted. Later, he learns from the murder-victim's father that Walchek is a low-level member of a protection-racket gang and was undoubtedly guilty. Mason is anxious to get the gang-leader, but when he discovers it is the eminently respected head of the city's Crime Commission, he feels that a conviction in a court-of-law would be impossible. In a rage, he kills the man, but all evidence, including the murder weapon points to Walchek. When the latter is again brought to trial, Mason, although he senses a higher justice is at work, feels he must defend him with the best of his ability.

    - Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>
  • Dwight Bradley Masen is a well respected lawyer from a long line of lawyers, he who sees the guiding principles of the law and justice as hallmarks by which he lives. His son, Bob Masen, will follow in Brad's footsteps, Bob who will soon be graduating from law school. It's because of Brad's stance on his profession that Andy Layford, Chair of the Citizens' Commission on Crime, asks him to sit on the commission. It is also that stance that leads to a lawyer acquaintance, Wayne Kellwin, asking Brad to take over one of his criminal cases, basically pro bono. The penniless client, twenty-six year old Rudi Wallchek, is charged with murdering nineteen year old Johnny Hulderman, the son of locksmith Peter Hulderman, late one evening in the Hulderman family business storefront. The request is basically a Hail Mary move on Kellwin's part, as Kellwin will probably lose the case based on evidence, and as Brad has no criminal trial experience, with Kellwin believing Rudi not guilty and wanting the jury to believe the same based on principled Brad being the defense lawyer. After speaking to Rudi, Brad accepts the case, also believing Rudi to be innocent. Despite the evidence, Brad is able to get a not guilty verdict from the jury. After the trial, Brad comes into some information which points to Rudi truly being the murderer, and that the murder itself was part of a larger extortion scheme where Rudi was probably only the collections man for whoever the head of the scheme. As Rudi cannot be retried for a charge for which he has already been acquitted, Brad has to decide how far he will go, in and out of the court, to ensure that justice is done against Rudi and for Rudi's boss, and if he himself is above the law if he does choose a path that is against the law.

    - Written by Huggo
  • Organized crime boss Rudi Wallchek is accused of murder and defended by prominent attorney Dwight Mason. After Wallchek is acquitted, he admits to Mason that he was, indeed, the murderer. When the chairman of the local crime commission is murdered, Wallchek is again accused. Attorney Mason sets in motion a series of events that assures justice will be served.

    - Written by David Glagovsky {dglagovsky@prodigy.net}

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