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Holdup man "Stash" Irwin robs the Apex Industrial Plastics Company of a $28,000 payroll, but is critically wounded while attempting to flee. He abandons his car, hides the money in a culvert, and hitches a ride with Warren Siddons (an Apex employee who is driving a nearly identical vehicle). After Irwin dies, Siddons is arrested at a Highway Patrol roadblock and appears to be complicit in the robbery, especially after Irwin's accomplices plant additional "evidence" in Siddons' home and office. Siddons steadfastly maintains his innocence in the face of seemingly overwhelming evidence to the contrary, and Dan Mathews and Officer Johnson eventually deduce that Siddons is either an innocent man or a fool. Betting on the former, they set a trap for Irwin's two accomplices. Written by
$28,000 in 1956 had the same purchasing power as $221,000 in 2009. See more »
When Erwin gets out of the car after it stops, he sees what is supposed to be a bullet hole in the rear, supposedly one of the two rounds fired by the guard, with the other round having hit Erwin. The mark was just the paint chipped away as there was no hole in the thin sheet metal. Later on, Matthews says the car had a punctured gas tank, alluding to why it had been abandoned. If the rear sheet metal had not been punctured, then the gas tank could not have been punctured and the car would not have stopped. See more »
One of the principal trouble sources of any law enforcement agency is circumstantial evidence. Too often, coincidence and chance conspire to point an overwhelming finger of guilt at an innocent person. The Highway Patrol encountered just such a case the morning that Stash Erwin, a wanted criminal, drove through the gates of the Apex Plastics Company.
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A robber in a rubber mask steals money from the Ajax Plastics Company's payroll office after knocking out the male employee and tying up the female employee. He flees but the woman scoots over and sets off the alarm just as the robber is at the security gate. He shoots the security guard and is in turn shot by the guard. Wounded, the robber runs off the road and starts hitch hiking. A motorist picks him but is soon stopped by the Highway Patrol. Mathews believes that the robber had to have an accomplice working inside the plastics company because of knowing there would be a lot of money in the office and his so easily getting through security. The wounded robber dies and Mathews believes that the motorist who picked him up must be the accomplice as he also works for the plastics company. The guy protests his innocence and Mathews comes to believe him. The real culprits plant evidence against the innocent motorist. But then, with the innocent motorist's help, Mathews sets a trap for them. A pretty interesting yarn but it does prove that Mother was always right: do NOT pick up hitch hikers!
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