All in the Family (1971–1979)
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Archie's Civil Rights 

A mugger tries to attack Archie in his cab ... but this time, Archie strikes back with some pepper spray. So why is Archie the one facing criminal charges?


Paul Bogart


Norman Lear (developed by), Larry Rhine | 2 more credits »

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Episode cast overview:
Carroll O'Connor ... Archie Bunker
Jean Stapleton ... Edith Bunker
Rob Reiner ... Michael 'Meathead' Stivic (credit only)
Sally Struthers ... Gloria Bunker-Stivic
Paulene Myers ... Judge Frances MacKenzie
Frank Campanella Frank Campanella ... Officer Gorsky
Charles Siebert ... D.A.
John Alvin ... Bailiff


Archie comes home with a wounded wrist and the news that he was mugged. He tells Edith and Gloria that, while driving his cab, a young man pulled a switch blade on him and demanded money. Archie fought him off with a small teargas sprayer that he got from a magazine. A police officer comes around and begins asking questions, and shocks Archie when he informs him that it is illegal for him to possess a teargas sprayer and gives him a summons to appear in court. Later, in court Archie tries to explain his case to the judge (who is black) and is informed that using the sprayer could cost him up to seven years in prison. He is also surprised to learn that the mugger was caught but set free because the cop didn't read him his rights in English. Also, the cop is at fault because he searched the Bunker house for the sprayer without a warrant. The case is dismissed. Written by Jerry Roberts <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama





Release Date:

1 December 1975 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tandem Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Paulene Myers appears in this episode as a judge. She later makes an appearance as a witness in court in My Cousin Vinnie. See more »


Judge: How do you plead?
Archie: Guilty with an explanation.
Judge: What's the explanation?
Archie: I ain't guilty.
See more »

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User Reviews

another great one
16 March 2011 | by stones78See all my reviews

It's been a few days since I've seen this episode, but like many before, and many after, this is another fine segment of this great show. The story is about how Archie is almost robbed while driving the taxi cab(he works part time for Munson's Cab Company), and much to his surprise, the suspect is white; when asked later if the suspect is caucasian, Archie says, "no, he's white." It turns out that Archie escaped the situation by squirting a tear gas spray(he got in a magazine)in the kid's face, even though a cop, played by Joseph Campanella informs him that he used the weapon illegally, and is facing a fine or possible prison term; he's at the Bunkers' house after the robbery attempt was reported by Archie. There's a funny moment when Edith offers him a donut, but after she learns of the officer's lecture to her husband about the illegal spray, she takes it away form him, then throws it at him. The latter half of the episode has Archie, Edith, and Gloria in court, and it's quite a moment when Archie sees a black judge; he's think's he's going to the slammer now. All ends well when the judge discovers that the officer violated Archie's(said that name too much in this review)civil rights by seizing the weapon in a drawer without using a search warrant before doing so. Like I said above, this is another great episode for a mostly great show.

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