The Case of the Wayward Wife
Airdate: Saturday, January 23, 1960
This page contains plot information, including
the resolution to the murder.
Enter at your own risk.
PlotArthur 'Artie' Poe is being released from the VA hospital after recouperation from injuries sustained while being a POW in Korea. When walking past a book store, he sees a book called Ordeal, written by Ben Sutton. Seems that Artie and Ben were in Korea together, and the book is really Artie's diary that Ben took from him when he thought he was dead. Artie pays a visit to Harry Wilson, another of his "buddies" from Korea, surprising him by the fact that he is still alive, and by the announcement that the book is really his. Artie confronts Ben, who tries to weasel his way out of things. Ben agrees to give him ten thousand dollars until something can be worked out. Gilbert Ames, Ben's brother-in-law, has been being blackmailed by Ben for an auto accident he had. Ben wants to get the ten thousand he needs from Gilbert. Sylvie Sutton decides to consult with Perry to see if there is anything she can do to stop Ben from blackmailing her and her brother. Perry suggests that they go to the police and report the accident, which will negate any reason for the blackmail. Sylvie decides to go to Palm Springs for a couple days. She receives a call from Marian Ames, Gil's wife, telling her that Gil had killed Ben and ran away. Slyvie takes a cab over to Ben's place, and leaves a definite impression of someone about to do something. She goes in, finds Ben dead, and runs out of the house. On the way back to the cab, she bumps into Artie, who is there to see Ben. She then gets back into the cab and goes back to Palm Springs, hoping to evade detection. As always happens, it didn't work. The sheriff picks her up and holds her for Tragg. Perry gets a visit from Artie. Artie tells him that Ordeal is his book, not Ben's. Artie tells him the story of the escape, and his recapture. Perry asks why he was at the house the night of the murder. Artie wants Perry to help him prove that he wrote the book, by asking Sylvie to relinquish the original manuscript, if Ben had kept it. Perry then visits Marian to find out about the whereabouts of Gil. She is not very helpful, and actually is pretty hostile. Perry throws out the suggestion that Gil might have disappeared to protect her, rather then protect his sister. Paul finds the lady that was in the accident. It turns out that it wasn't Gil that hit her, it was Sylvie. Gil had been protecting his sister by taking the blame. As the trial begins, Burger builds his case of evidence against Sylvie. He shows that she disguised herself with some housekeeper's clothes and was at her home at about the time of the murder. Perry, trying to show the flaws in the circumstantial evidence, asks Tragg about the murder weapon. Why weren't the defendants fingerprints located in the place that would most likely be the grasping point when using it to kill? Why, if it was full of liquor, didn't Syvlie's dress have any traces of liquor on it? Burger brings Gil up as a hostile witness, attempting to use him against his sister. When Perry cross examines him, he has Marian leave the courtroom so that they can't "compare notes" when she testifies later. Perry brings up the possibility that it was Marian that had ransacked the Sutton house between the time Gil was there and the time that Artie was there. Perry then cross examines Marian. He asks questions that lead her to admit that Gil had suspected her and was hiding for that reason. She then admits that she was at the Sutton house earlier in the afternoon to talk to Ben. She relates a conversation she overheard between Harry and Ben. Harry and Ben made an agreement to say that Ben had written the book. They would then adapt the book into a film. If Harry backed Ben up, Artie would have no chance in claiming authorship. Perry then brings out all of the gambling losses, and after a lot of questions, gets Harry to admit that he was blackmailing Ben the whole time because he knew that he didn't write the book. He also admits that he went back to the Sutton house to get the diary. But he denies killing Ben at that time, however, I think that nobody in the courtroom believed it. Perry visits Artie in the VA hospital. Artie relates the story of how he killed Ben in self defense.