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The murder of his business partner leads Cheyenne to investigate the man's hidden true identity.

Dead to Rights
Season 3, Episode 18
Air date May 20, 1958
Written by Albert Aley, Melvin Levy
Directed by Leslie H Martinson
Episode guide
Previous
Standoff
Next
Noose at Noon

Episode Notes

  • Mike Connors of the TV show Mannix guest stars in this episode.

Real World References

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Continuity Nitpicks and Errors

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Plot

Cheyenne Bodie is a partner in a freight business with a short-fused diminutive man named Shorty Jones. Just before a big job, Shorty says he has to leave on a personal issue in Sacramento, but will return. By the end of the week, Cheyenne is still waiting for Shorty to come back and decides to go after him.

Deadtorights-inacoat-cheyenne

Cheyenne chats with Coll about Shorty's family.

Bodie reaches California's capital and finds Shorty in jail. He was arrested for fighting with a pickpocket named Roy Simmons. Shorty apologizes for his prolonged absence and explains he's trying to protect his wife and son. Before he finishes, someone shoots and kills Shorty through the jail window!

Outside, Cheyenne and the sheriff find a casing and deduce it was from a .44 Winchester rifle. This is the same make that Simmons carries. Inside the sheriff's office, they meet attorney Saylor Hornbook who exchanged harsh words with Shorty at the hotel the day before. Hornbook wants to look through Shorty's belongings, but Cheyenne disputes his claim and takes the items himself.

Deadtorights-shortyssonfound-cheyenne

Roy Simmons is trying to protect Shorty's son from the killer...or is he?

As Cheyenne enters his hotel room, someone pistol whips him in the dark and rifles through his things. Cheyenne wakes and struggles with the man, causing him to drop his revolver and run from the room. While Cheyenne cleans up, he's visited by Hornbook who requests again to look through Shorty's belongings. He has Hornbook identify the symbol on the gun butt left by his assailant as the brand of the Marshall family, whom he represents. Not finding what he wants among Shorty's things, Hornbook leaves and Cheyenne takes stock of his list of suspects. Hornbook also carries a .44 Winchester.

Cheyenne pays the Marshall ranch a visit, finding Adalaide Marshall in the middle of target practice with her .44 rifle. Tight-lipped Adalaide refuses to acknowledge anyone from her ranch attacked Bodie, despite the tell-tale revolver. The woman stands to inherit the Marshall ranch and all of her uncle's money, but not until Hornbook finds out if her only other relative, Samuel Marshall, Jr., is alive or dead.

Deadtorights-adalaidechat-cheyenne

Adalaide isn't keen on answering Cheyenne's questions about Shorty's death.

Cheyenne decides to seek out Shorty's wife for answers at the Jones ranch in the Siskiyou Mountains. He stops at the Crossroads Rest hotel to ask for directions, but doesn't notice Roy Simmons seated across the room. The chatty proprietor Bruce Coll gives him directions to the ranch and tells him that Simmons and another man were also looking for the same place.

Cheyenne gets to the ranch in a hurry, but finds a tragic scene. Mrs. Jones is dead and her son is no where to be found. Hornbook arrives wanting to speak to Mrs. Jones and is shocked at the murder. They have to bury her and head back quickly to the Crossroads Rest before they get stuck in the snowstorm. As Cheyenne is tending to the horses in the barn, he sees Coll's daughter Vardis leave a back room. Cheyenne enters and finds Simmons caring for the missing Jones boy. Roy claims to be protecting the boy. Cheyenne goes inside the hotel to find Adalaide and her fiancé Gregg Dewey inside. They too have come to speak to Mrs. Jones. It was Dewey who attacked Cheyenne in his hotel room, without Adalaide's knowledge.

The snowstorm has kept the visitors confined to the hotel. As Coll reads Hornbook's latest ad in the Sacramento newspaper asking for info about Sam Marshall, Cheyenne perks up. He goes out and visits Simmons and the boy who is feeling better. He doesn't have any answers as to who killed his mother. Simmons has a clue and Cheyenne demands he share it. The clue is a locket he stole that reveals Shorty was Sam Marshall, Jr., and that his son is the true heir to the estate! The last mystery to solve is who killed Shorty and his wife. Cheyenne has a good idea which of his four suspects is the killer and plans to flush them out.

Cheyenne grabs some snowshoes from Coll and tells the others he is going to look for the missing boy at the Jones ranch. Dewey and Hornbook demand to come with. As they prowl around the snowy hillside, Cheyenne directs everyone to split up. Earlier, Cheyenne instructed Simmons to follow them. As Cheyenne, Simmons and Dewey regroup, a shot rings out in their direction. Hornbook has them pinned down and is trying to kill all three of them! Cheyenne suspected the lawyer was the killer, as his newspaper ad included a clue he knew Sam Marshall (Shorty) was already dead. Cheyenne uses his rifle to start an avalanche and a crushing hillside of snow rushes down burying Hornbook.

All the mysteries circling the Marshall family are finally resolved. At the Crossroads Rest, Vardis and Roy commit to taking care of the Jones boy and of each other.

Quotes

"You haven't given me much chance to talk to you, Mr. Bodie, to tell you how really sorry I am about Mrs. Jones."
"Are you, Miss Marshall?"
"Well, of course. It's a terrible thing. Do you suppose it's the same man who killed her husband?"
"Or the same woman."

- Adalaide Marshall learns that Cheyenne Bodie suspects her of murder.

Purchase Cheyenne Season 3

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www.clintwalker.com or www.amazon.com

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