In the Heat of the Night: Season 1, Episode 7

A Necessary Evil (12 Apr. 1988)

TV Episode  |   |  Drama, Crime, Mystery
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Gillespie and Tibb's reluctant investigation of a bigamy case becomes absurd with the accused's half dozen wives, and serious when he is found dead in his cell.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Chief of Detectives Virgil Tibbs (as Howard Rollins)
David Hart ...
Patrolman Junior Abernathy (as Christian Le Blanc)
Eugete Davenport
David Orange ...
Henley Davenport
Elmyra Carroway
James 'J.J.' Jeffson
Zita Mack ...
Bea Jeffson
Lucille Jeffson
Alozia St. Julien ...
Ellie Anne Jeffson
Janee Michelle ...
Arlene Jeffson
Juanita Brooks ...
Raynette Jeffson


Henley Davenport is arrested for drunk & disorderly, and his sister Eugete wants him released into her custody. Elmyra Carroway, Henley's intended, argues that he should be in her care instead. James Jeffson's wife accuses him of bigamy. However, the charge escalates to polygamy when six women claim to be Mrs. James Jeffson. Things turn serious when Jeffson dies in his cell of arsenic poisoning. Written by richardann

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Crime | Mystery





Release Date:

12 April 1988 (USA)  »

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This was the only television appearance of Juanita Brooks, Zita Mack, and Alozia St. Julien. See more »


When Mr. Jefferson's fourth wife (who is also his attorney) arrives at the police station and is being escorted to the jail room to see her husband, Chief instructs Junior to finish escorting her to the jail room but calls him "Jamison". See more »

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