A TV reporter who will stop at nothing to get a big scoop -- up to and including inventing the story outright. He hires a professional stunt man to fake his own suicide by diving off a bridge while the reporter is there and the cameras roll. Just as the stunt man makes his leap, a priest who has been trying to talk the "suicide" out of jumping makes a last-ditch grab at the stunt man's clothing. As a result, both take a tumble into Los Angeles Harbor, and the priest is killed on impact. When the stunt man, who survived and is now hiding out, calls out the reporter on ...
A gang leader sends two of his men to bring Barnaby to him but he's not around so they get J.R. and bring him to him. He tells J.R. that his friend and lieutenant was shot and killed. Most of his gang are inclined to believe that someone from a rival gang may have been the one who killed him and would like to start a war. But the leader doesn't think so. So he wants J.R. to find who it is before a war breaks out. Barnaby upon learning of what happened to J.R. and what he is doing is doing some digging of his own.
After a distraught and depressed woman attempts suicide, Barnaby Jones is compelled to re-investigate a case in which he may have helped wrongly convict her ex-husband of kidnapping a little boy four years earlier.
Barnaby continues to re-investigate an old kidnapping case in which he firmly believes the wrong man has been put into prison for the crime. But as the investigation deepens, and the murders pile up, Barnaby knows he is close to the truth.