A mousy heiress murders her brother, pretending she thought he was a burglar. Lt. Columbo unravels her alibi.



(teleplay by), (story by) | 2 more credits »

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Episode complete credited cast:
Beth Chadwick
Mrs. Chadwick
Bryce Chadwick
Joel Fluellen ...
2nd Detective
Garry Walberg ...
1st Detective
Jon Lormer ...
Hearing Officer
Frank Baxter ...
Susan Barrister ...


Beth Chadwick has lived all her life controlled first by her father, then after his death, by her brother Bryce who manages the family business. Now she has fallen for Peter Hamilton, who works for Bryce. But, as usual, Bryce objects to her choice and threatens to fire Peter. So Beth decides to murder her brother and to do it in such a way to let it to appear like an accident. Lt. Columbo realizes at once the truth and starts looking for evidence. Written by Baldinotto da Pistoia

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Release Date:

15 December 1971 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


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Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The new car that is delivered to Beth Chadwick is a Ferrari 365GTB. See more »


When Beth Chadwick starts to leave the hairdresser she asks for her bill and for another appointment time. She is given her bill which she signs but she isn't given an appointment time. See more »


Beth Chadwick: Well, if I've changed, it's because I thought you'd like a more exciting woman.
Peter Hamilton: A change, yes, but a complete metamorphosis? I'm not sure, Beth, you're the same person.
Beth Chadwick: Maybe I'm not.
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Love Theme from 'Red Sky At Morning'
Composed by Billy Goldenberg
Heard during the bar scene
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User Reviews

Another excellent Columbo mystery
20 November 1999 | by (Ottawa, Canada) – See all my reviews

Susan Clark plays an excellent murderess in this movie, stifled and controlled by her brother who manages the family business and the money. Her plan to break free of his control and take over the business herself is well worked out and seems foolproof, but one miscalculation leaves her having to improvise her way out one problem after another. Leslie Nielsen, as her lawyer boyfriend, turns in a fine performance, as he plays a sensible, serious role with humour but without the manic quality that has come to be his trademark. Peter Falk's Columbo does a good job worrying and nibbling at the truth, forcing the killer to come up with more lies and explanations, until the contradictions close in on her and she is caught. The viewer finds himself sympathizing with the murderer at the beginning, but her growing confidence and arrogance as she reaps the fruits of her crime succeed in making her downfall a satisfying one.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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