A teenager accidentally kills a gangster's hired hand while robbing him, only to have a rival gangster hire him to take out the competition in order to gain control over the neighborhood.

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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Carmine Caridi ...
Stan Sherback
Jack Ging ...
Hackford (as Jack L. Ging)
...
Billy Sherback
Linda Carlson ...
Ellen Sherback
...
Jonas Vukich
Regina Baff ...
Sister Catherine
Susan Adams ...
Sgt. Harriet Clark
Phillip Pine ...
Jason Kreiger
Louis Guss ...
Karl Scheer
Mark Russell ...
Vince Conti ...
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A teenager accidentally kills a gangster's hired hand while robbing him, only to have a rival gangster hire him to take out the competition in order to gain control over the neighborhood.

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23 October 1977 (USA)  »

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(Technicolor)

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1.33 : 1
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"We're raising a whole generation of criminals we can't touch"
26 March 2013 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The highways and byways of the juvenile justice system get a long hard look in this Kojak episode. That title quote is from Telly Savalas who has to deal with a juvenile hit-man. This may have been one of the first television stories to deal with the phenomenon of a kid going to work for gangsters and making hits because he's under age and the juvenile justice system can only go so far.

I'm surprised that the District Attorney did not step in and try young Barry Miller as an adult. Miller commits two murders during the course of this story, one accidental, the other on purpose. He's working for Jack Ging who is an underboss of one of the local numbers rackets. His group is having a turf war with Al Ruscio's rival crew.

In the meantime Miller's hardworking parents, they own a luncheonette are at a loss as to how to deal with him. Theo Kojak and the Manhattan South Squad have no real answers either. Susan Adams has a brief role as a sergeant in the juvenile division and she seems more interested in protecting her turf than in arresting potential criminals. She's some piece of work.

In the end this hardened hit-man shows he's really a kid after all. This is a good episode from Kojak.


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