After a married couple are found shot at a roadside, the man identifies a leather-jacketed hitchhiker as the shooter, and after the woman's death, the killer. But the crook can't be found, and the wounded man's story is questioned.


(as Robert S. Finkel)


(as Fenton W. Earnshaw)


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Episode cast overview:
Barbara Fuller
Henry Rebbs
Robert Edgecomb
Herbert Ellis


After a married couple are found shot at a roadside, the man identifies a leather-jacketed hitchhiker as the shooter, and after the woman's death, the killer. But the crook can't be found, and the wounded man's story is questioned.

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Release Date:

1954 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Plenty of red herrings in this top Episode.
14 March 2015 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

CITY DETECTIVE –Glass Thumb- 1954

This is episode 29 of the 1953 to 1955 Police series, CITY DETECTIVE. Rod Cameron headlines as a Detective in a major U.S. city. The series ran for a total of 64 episodes. The series featured quite a few well-known actors in guest bits. These include, Hugh Beaumont, Whit Bissell, Marie Windsor, Carolyn Jones, Fess Parker, Angie Dickinson, Russell Johnson, Claude Akins, Lynn Bari, George Macready, Beverly Garland, Ann Savage and Lee Van Cleef.

Police Detective Lt Rod Cameron is called out to the scene of a double shooting. The shooting took place on a road just out of the city. A local farmer had found a car parked on the side of the road. Inside was a dead woman, while just outside the auto, was a man suffering from a bullet wound. The badly hurt man, Frank Ferguson, blurts out that they had been robbed by a young hitchhiker. Ferguson is then rushed off to the emergency ward for repairs.

The Police put out an all points for any hitchhiker types spotted in the area. Once Ferguson is out of surgery, Detective Cameron and his partner, Douglas Fowley, question the man. Ferguson tells the Detectives that his wife, and himself, were just out for drive. They gave a young lad they saw thumbing, a ride. The kid pulled a gun and robbed them. The Detectives get a better description on the hitchhiker including a distinctive black leather coat.

Detectives Cameron and Fowley drive out themselves for another look at the area. They see a fellow hiding along the side of the road and put the grab on him. The fellow, Robert Edgecomb, is wearing a black leather jacket which has fresh blood on it.

Edgecomb is taken to the station for a vigorous round of third degree. He is most uncooperative and will not spill his name or details. From a tattoo on his arm, the Detectives deduce the man was in the armed forces at one time. They send off his prints to Washington. They then haul the fellow to the hospital for Ferguson to identify.

Ferguson is not sure but does say the jacket is the same. Edgecomb is again given another going over when the Cops get his real name. It seems the fellow is an escapee from a State work camp. Edgecomb caves and admits he was on the lam, but knows nothing about any murder and robbery. The blood was from a dispute with a fellow several days earlier. Cameron checks his alibi and finds he was nowhere near the area when the killing occurred.

Cameron plays a hunch and digs into Ferguson's family and work history. He soon uncovers that Ferguson has been stepping out with a woman from work. They bring said woman in for a friendly chat. The woman, Barbara Billingsley, fills the Cops in on Ferguson and herself. She was waiting for Ferguson to divorce his wife so they could get hitched.

The Detectives now lean on Ferguson with this new information. They suggest that Ferguson killed his wife and staged the whole event, even wounding himself. Ferguson folds like a wet tent in a tornado and admits all. The hitchhiker was just a ploy to throw off the Police. It looks like a long fall with a short rope is in Ferguson's future. A pretty good episode with several nicely played red herrings throughout.

Look fast at the start and you will see veteran character player, Hank Patterson. Patterson was known to a whole generation of TV viewers as Fred Ziffel on the 60's comedy, GREEN ACRES. Douglas Fowley appeared in about 500 diff film and television roles. Miss Billingsley of course was famous as June Cleaver on the long running series, LEAVE IT TO BEAVER.

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