Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: Richard Diamond, Private Detective
Show: The Gibson Murder Case
Date: Oct 08 1949

CAST

Eddie King, Your Announcer
Richard Diamond/Dick Powell
Harvey Austin, A Scam Artist
Virginia "Ginny" Austin (aka Pelgram), His Wife/Partner-In-Crime
Leland Gibson, Their Elderly Victim
Helen Asher, Diamond's High Society-Type Girlfriend
Esther Blodgett, A Schoolteacher
Sergeant Otis, A Dumb Cop
Lieutenant Walt Levinson/Ed Begley Sr.
Miss Gibson, Leland's Daughter
An Adams Hotel Clerk
A Landlady

EDDIE KING:

"The Ethel Merman Show", previously scheduled for this time, will be heard at a new time and date, to be announced shortly.

EDDIE KING:

Here, transcribed, is Dick Powell as "Richard Diamond, Private Detective"!

MFX

DIAMOND:

(narrating) Hello there? this is Diamond. Hey, I gotta beef. I went shopping for my girl, Helen Asher, the other day. You know, stuff for dinner. This town's gotten hotter than a blast furnace in Death Valley so you gotta pick out things that make for a cool meal. Like salads, cold cuts? beer. Real picnic-style. Well I figured I could whip up a fancy tossed salad or something? until I got around to the tomato counter. Have you glommed onto the price of tomatoes lately? Now what's with that? So the cost of living is inflated? so a t-bone makes like it just arrived from the sultan's classiest cow- okay, a t-bone I can understand! But what's with a tomato? when it costs so much it should hanging from a charm bracelet instead of lying on a salad bowl? Who needs it?? So I bowed from the waste and figured you still could do a lot of things with a plain head of lettuce. Oh, er, I got another beef, too. Why can't people start their killings in December when it's cool? Now about a week ago, I got mixed-up in a case and before it was over, I took so many salt tablets, I am now the best-seasoned private detective in New York. It started last Tuesday morning about eleven o'clock, in an apartment on the Upper East Side?

SFX:

DOOR OPENS/CLOSES

HARVEY:

Ginny-

VIRGINIA:

(sullenly) Yeah genius

HARVEY:

No cracks

VIRGINIA:

-"No cracks"- we're both waitin' for ol' Gibson to turn us into th'cops and you say "no cracks"! This whole rotten mess is yer fault-

HARVEY:

Well how did I know the old goat wouldn't fall fer it

VIRGINIA:

-Well, he didn't? so we better start packing.

HARVEY:

What for-

VIRGINIA:

Because I don't wanna play hostess to a lotta little men in blue; I'm allergic to handcuffs

HARVEY:

Relax, willya? He won't find us

VIRGINIA:

He can trace me from the other apartment

HARVEY:

How? Gibson don't know yer real name; didja leave anything at the other place that would lead'em here


VIRGINIA:

No? cleaned out everything except the clothes I didn't intend to move'em-

HARVEY:

(snorts derisively) Notice ya got away with a mink

VIRGINIA:

Whaddja want me t'do? leave it behind

HARVEY:

-Nah, nah we can hock it.

VIRGINIA:

"Hock it"-

HARVEY:

-Yeah! You wanna blow town? It takes cash? cash I ain't got.

VIRGINIA:

Yer tellin' me.

HARVEY:

Look baby, if Gibson does go to the police, I'll have ta hock th'coat so we can blow this joint, see?

VIRGINIA:

(sighing) All right? you go get rid of it and I'll start throwin' some things in our suitcase-

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK

HARVEY:

-Who's that?

VIRGINIA:

How would I know? Maybe it's th'landlady.

HARVEY:

Oh, I forgot? they're paintin' this floor t'day.

VIRGINIA:

Yeah, I saw the painters in 206; they'll probably start in this room in a coupla hours-

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK

HARVEY:

(yelling off mike) Okay, okay! (whispered to VIRGINIA) Dump th'coat. I don't want th'landlady t'spot it

VIRGINIA:

-Yeah.

SFX:

FOOTSTEPS/DOOR OPEN

HARVEY:

Yeah, wha Gibson!

GIBSON:

So you really are married, huh-

VIRGINIA:

(calling from off mike) Who is it, Harve

GIBSON:

-Hello, Virginia!

VIRGINIA:

Mr. Gibson-

GIBSON:

-Yes? I waited around in front of the other apartment and followed you here. I wanted to be sure to send the police to the right place!

HARVEY:

Look, Mr. Gibs-

GIBSON:

You look, whatever your real name is! I don't like being blackmailed or threatened

VIRGINIA:

But please

GIBSON:

No, Virginia, my mind is made up! In a way, I'm sorry for you? but you didn't think about me!! I'm past sixty and I'm tired of being made a fool

HARVEY:

Look, why doncha give her a break Mr. Gibson!! Now I'm not asking for

GIBSON:

That's very noble of you! You should have thought about that a few hours ago when you accused me of making love to your wife!! You're not really married

HARVEY:

Why you I oughta

GIBSON:

-There's no need for expressing your indignation! There'll be plenty of time for that when the police arrive!

(beat)

VIRGINIA:

Harve-

HARVEY:

Yeah? c'min here

GIBSON:

How dare you

SFX:

STRUGGLE/DOOR SLAM

GIBSON:

-Take your hands off me!

HARVEY:

Look? you ain't callin' nobody; you'll listen t'me-

GIBSON:

You take your hands off me

VIRGINIA:

-Whaddya gonna do, Harve?

HARVEY:

I'm gonna change this old goat's mind about callin' th'cops-

GIBSON:

You can't threaten me

SFX:

PUNCH

GIBSON:

(screams in pain) -You struck me!

HARVEY:

How'd you guess-

VIRGINIA:

Harve, take it easy, he's an old man

GIBSON:

Your concern is misplaced my dear; I can take care of myself

SFX:

CANE HITTING SOMEONE'S HEAD

HARVEY:

Why you? gimme that cane-

GIBSON:

(struggling) -I'll be glad to give it to you? across your shoulders!!!

HARVEY:

(struggling) Gimme that-

VIRGINIA:

Harve, be careful

HARVEY:

(struggling) Hit me with a cane, willya

GIBSON:

(struggling) You young

HARVEY:

(struggling) I'll shut you up for good

SFX:

CANE HITTING SOMEONE'S HEAD REPEATEDLY

VIRGINIA:

(screaming) -Harvey! Harvey! Harveeeeeyyyyy!

SFX:

BODY FALLING TO THE FLOOR

VIRGINIA:

You idiot.

HARVEY:

(out of breath) Huh?

VIRGINIA:

You big, stupid idiot. Look what you've done!

HARVEY:

(out of breath) So what? He'll know better next time? trow some water on'em? wellja hear me? Trow some water on'em- what's wrong-

VIRGINIA:

(shaking) -H-H-Harve-

SFX:

HANDS PATTING A FACE TO WAKE SOMEONE UP

HARVEY:

-C'mon, c'mon Gibsy! C'mon, c'mon! (beat) Holy cow?

VIRGINIA:

(quietly) Is he-

HARVEY:

-Yeah, yeah.

VIRGINIA:

(begins sobbing)

HARVEY:

(at first comforting then screaming) Aw-sh-shh-SHUT UP! (quietly desperate) We gotta get'em outta here!

VIRGINIA:

(hysterical) Whydja have t'hit'em with that cane?!? Now ya are in trouble-

HARVEY:

-I'm in trouble?!?! We're in trouble, baby, we, we? (VIRGINIA keeps sobbing) stop that cryin' all over the place! Help me get'em outta here!

VIRGINIA:

(hysterical) How're we gonna do it- it's broad daylight-

HARVEY:

Yeah? we can't get him outta th'building like this? we'll have t'wait til tonight

VIRGINIA:

We can't leave'em in here

HARVEY:

Why not

VIRGINIA:

The painters

HARVEY:

Whaddya mean wh

VIRGINIA:

They'll be here in a little while

HARVEY:

Yeah, yeah

VIRGINIA:

(angrily) Oh yeah? now what, genius

HARVEY:

Shut up SHUT UP, WILLYA? I've gotta think?

MFX

SFX:

PHONE RING/PHONE BEING PICKED UP

DIAMOND:

Diamond Detective Agency. Murders financed while you wait-

HELEN:

(affectionately, through a filter) Oh you idiot

DIAMOND:

Oh is this "Toodles" Asher the belle of Park Avenue

HELEN:

Uh, this is Helen Asher, the girl that goes steady with Diamond Detective Agency

DIAMOND:

Sounds like a fine organization. Are they reliable

HELEN:

Very seldom

DIAMOND:

-Oh-

HELEN:

-I'll tell you better as soon as I find out what I'm going to do tonight.

DIAMOND:

You're gonna give your butler the evening off and the Diamond Detective Agency is gonna march through your front door, single file, and show you a short cut to spin the bottle.

HELEN:

(chuckling) What time does all this begin-

DIAMOND:

How long will it take you to pucker

HELEN:

-'Bout two seconds.

DIAMOND:

Well I won't get there 'til eight. Don't hold it or you'll end up looking like Betty Boop-

HELEN:

You're terrible

DIAMOND:

Yeah, but I'm pretty

HELEN:

So's a baboon

DIAMOND:

(mocking) -Oh, what you send!

HELEN:

You won't be late, will you Rick?

DIAMOND:

I don't know. After that last crack, maybe I better start going steady with King Kong-

HELEN:

Rick

DIAMOND:

No, I'm mad

HELEN:

(breathy) Ricky? I love you

DIAMOND:

-Only because I can hang by my tail and my fangs have that "toothpaste smile"!

HELEN:

I think you're the most wonderful man in the world-

DIAMOND:

Well

HELEN:

I think you're the handsomest, the strongest, the smartest

DIAMOND:

Well, all right... now, tell me something I don't already know

HELEN:

(amused) Rick

DIAMOND:

Bye baby, see you at eight

HELEN:

(like a southern belle) Bye

SFX:

PHONE HANGS UP

DIAMOND:

(singing to himself) -"A" I'm adorable, "B" I'm so beautiful, "C" I'm-

SFX:

PHONE RING/PHONE BEING PICKED UP

DIAMOND:

Now look honey, I can't make it until eight o'clock. I got a fan dancer who's a client and she wants to go out and trap an ostrich this afternoon

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(very upset; through a filter) -Is this the Diamond Detective Agency?

DIAMOND:

Huh? Oh yeah-

ESTHER BLODGETT:

-Is this M-Mr. Diamond?

DIAMOND:

Yeah? what's the matter? You sound like you're standing on a body-

ESTHER BLODGETT:

-Oh, Mr. Diamond, please you've got to help me, I-I just don't know what to do-

DIAMOND:

-Now take it easy? who is this?

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(gasps)

DIAMOND:

What-

ESTHER BLODGETT:

I thought it moved

DIAMOND:

What moved

ESTHER BLODGETT:

-The man sitting in my chair!

DIAMOND:

Well that happens now and then; why shouldn't he-

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(not comprehending) Oh! Well, because he's dead

DIAMOND:

What

ESTHER BLODGETT:

-Yes! I came home this afternoon from Girl's Camp and when I unlocked my door and went in, I saw this-er-corpse sitting on my Hepplewhite-

DIAMOND:

On your what

ESTHER BLODGETT:

Hepplewhite I don't know how he could have gotten there-

DIAMOND:

-Hepplewhite?

ESTHER BLODGETT:

No? the dead man-

DIAMOND:

-What about Hepplewhite?

ESTHER BLODGETT:

Who-

DIAMOND:

The guy this corpse was sitting on

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(chuckling) Oh no, no, no, no, no, that's a chair! Hepplewhite's an old antique chair

DIAMOND:

-Oh.

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(sighs) Oh, now I'm so confused-

DIAMOND:

Well move over, honey. Now, take it easy and give me one thing at a time. Who's the dead guy

ESTHER BLODGETT:

-Well, I don't know! I never saw him before in my life!

DIAMOND:

Okay. Now why haven't you called the police-

ESTHER BLODGETT:

-Well, I thought about that, but? I'm a schoolteacher Mr. Diamond and I was afraid of the scandal. I read a lot of detective stories and the first thing that came to my mind was calling a-a private eye!

DIAMOND:

"Private eye". Hm-

ESTHER BLODGETT:

You have the biggest ad in the phone book, so naturally

DIAMOND:

-"Naturally". Well, give me your name and address and I'll be right over.

ESTHER BLODGETT:

Oh, uhm, "Esther Blodgett, 419 East 79th Street. Apartment 108"-

DIAMOND:

Okay Esther. Now don't let anyone in and don't touch anything

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(laughs) -Oh I know that, silly. After the initial shock wore off, I found myself in complete control (huge gasp)-

DIAMOND:

What's the matter

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(freaking out) -I'm so nervous! I just lit a cigarette; it tasted so good I offered one to the dead man!!

DIAMOND:

(dryly) Well, if he takes it, remember how you did it. I'll be right over.

SFX:

PHONE HANGS UP/PHONE BEING DIALED/PHONE RINGING THROUGH FILTER/PHONE BEING PICKED UP THROUGH FILTER

DIAMOND:

(to himself, while dialing) Hmmm, "Hepplewhite"? oh, is Walt gonna have fun with this-

SGT. OTIS:

(through filter) Homicide, Sgt. Otis

DIAMOND:

-Hello Otis. Lemme talk to the lieutenant.

SGT. OTIS:

(after a beat) Diamond?

DIAMOND:

(heavily sarcastic) No, this is "Black Beauty"? I just did a mile in one-twelve and I want to report that I've been doped-

SGT. OTIS:

Very funny

DIAMOND:

(still heavily sarcastic) I thought so. I didn't win the race but I was the happiest horse on the track. Now, put the lieutenant on the phone

SGT. OTIS:

-Uh-

SFX:

PHONE LINE CLICKING OVER THROUGH FILTER

LEVINSON:

(speaking through filter) Lieutenant Levinson

DIAMOND:

Diamond, Walt

LEVINSON:

I don't want any! You take your killings to another precinct

DIAMOND:

Oh now, don't be a sorehead; giving you business is just my way of showing you my friendship

LEVINSON:

Can't we just be buddies at a distance? I'm tired of chasing corpses

DIAMOND:

-Well, grit your teeth and get over to 419 East 79th Street, Apartment 108.

LEVINSON:

(dreading the answer) Homicide?

DIAMOND:

Yeah. A dame named Esther Blodgett reported it. She lives there.

LEVINSON:

Who's dead?

DIAMOND:

Well, I don't know- oh, yeah, yeah? a guy named "Hepplewhite"-

LEVINSON:

-"Hepplewhite"?

DIAMOND:

(setting him up) You ask Esther about it; she'll put you straight-

LEVINSON:

You coming over

DIAMOND:

-Yeah. (like a southern belle) Bye.

MFX

DIAMOND:

(narrating) As I went out of my office, I thought about Esther Blodgett and wondered how mad she would be when the police turned up. I had to call them whether she wanted the scandal or not because homicide comes first in my book. I'm an ex-cop and I still follow the rules. It's not a conscience; I just like staying in business. So when someone turns up with a killing, I always let Lieutenant Walt Levinson know about it. I grabbed a cab and twenty minutes later, I was standing in Esther's apartment along with Walt, the dead man and Hepplewhite-

LEVINSON:

-Oh, you're a swell fellow, you are!

DIAMOND:

(to LEVINSON) What's the matter, Walt-

LEVINSON:

I've been going through that "Hepplewhite" routine for the last ten minutes! I just found out it was a chair, that one right over there, the one the stiff's in

ESTHER BLODGETT:

(coming up to mike, upset) Mr. Diamond, why did you call the police

DIAMOND:

I thought you'd ask that

LEVINSON:

Because that man's been murdered Miss Blodgett! That's what good citizens do when they find a dead man in the apartment

ESTHER:

-Oh, but-but-but- the scandal? I'm a schoolteacher! What will my students' mommies and daddies think-

DIAMOND:

-Honey, just confuse'em with that "Hepplewhite" routine? what'd you find out, Walt?

LEVINSON:

Not much. The coroner will be here in a few minutes.

DIAMOND:

Looks like someone gave'em a pretty good beating. What's that all over his clothes-

ESTHER:

Uhm, isn't that blood, Mr. Diamond

DIAMOND:

Yeah he's been bleeding all right? I mean that brown stuff, Walt. It looks like lint or something

LEVINSON:

I noticed that, too. I don't what it is. We'll have the lab analyze it

DIAMOND:

-Tell me Esther? you said, when you came in, you unlocked the door.

ESTHER:

Yes, that's right.

DIAMOND:

Are you sure it was locked--

ESTHER:

Why yes, it has a catch lock. Besides, you have to turn the key and use the other hand to turn the knob and

DIAMOND:

-Did you touch anything? Open any windows?

ESTHER (indignant) I touched nothing.

DIAMOND:

Hm? well, there's a good one Walt-

LEVINSON:

-Yeah. A corpse sitting in a room with the door and all the windows locked! Do you always lock the windows when you go out, Miss Blodgett?

ESTHER:

Well, I've been away for several weeks. At a girl's camp-

DIAMOND:

-Aren't you a little old for that sort of thing?

ESTHER:

Oh, I-I've been counseling; one of the teachers who goes along to take care of the young girls-

LEVINSON:

-Hm? what do you think, Rick?

DIAMOND:

Well, he wasn't killed in this apartment-

LEVINSON:

Nooo, no signs of a struggle

DIAMOND:

There's only blood around the chair and on the body; he must have been carried in

LEVINSON:

There would be blood trails on the floor

DIAMOND:

Not if he was carried in something? (to ESTHER) You say you never saw this man, Esther

ESTHER:

(as if swearing on a stack of bibles) Never in my life

DIAMOND:

Hmm. (to LEVINSON) Any identification in his wallet

LEVINSON:

Yeah, the name's "Gibson. Leland Gibson." No money taken either. So that eliminates the robbery angle

DIAMOND:

Any address

LEVINSON:

Yeah, he's got an old driver's license. "12 East 64th Street". Pretty classy district

DIAMOND:

Judging by his clothes, he was well fixed. Tailored. Good store

LEVINSON:

And as soon as the coroner arrives, I'm going to check this apartment building. Maybe somebody heard something or saw something

DIAMOND:

-Hey Walt, lemme check this 64th Street address for you.

LEVINSON:

This is a police job; why do you want to check it?

DIAMOND:

Oh because poor Miss Blodgett looks so unhappy-

ESTHER:

I am, Mr. Diamond. I am very unhappy

DIAMOND:

See Walt

LEVINSON:

So she's unhappy! If you wanna check the place on your own, go ahead! But I'm sending some men over anyway

ESTHER:

Mr. Diamond? I like you

DIAMOND:

Well thank you Esther

LEVINSON:

(disgusted) Ohh

ESTHER:

(the most exciting thing she's ever done in her life) -I-I want to hire you to-to catch the killer and free me from this awful policeman-

LEVINSON:

-"Awful policeman"? Do you know how I got this way, Miss Blodgett-

ESTHER:

(innocently) Oh I'm sure it wasn't easy

DIAMOND:

Good for you Esther

LEVINSON:

I got this way because of this this private detective-

DIAMOND:

-Just call me "blue eyes"-

LEVINSON:

Ever since he stopped working with me, and left the force, I've gotten mixed up in more screwy cases than an alcoholic in a whiskey truck! There isn't one week that he doesn't turn up with one or two killings

ESTHER:

(chuckling) My, he gets excited, doesn't he, Mr. Diamond

LEVINSON:

And in his spare time, he intimidates my sergeant

DIAMOND:

(to ESTHER) Just call me Rick, dear

LEVINSON:

I've taken enough bicarbonate in the last year to stop Vesuvius from erupting! And if he doesn't give me a little peace and quiet, I'm going to end up solving a killing of my own

ESTHER:

(entranced with DIAMOND) -"Rick"? my, that's a nice name-

DIAMOND:

(to ESTHER) How did you ever get to be a schoolteacher? You don't look the type

LEVINSON:

(at the end of his rope) Are you listening to me

ESTHER:

(blushing) -Wh-what makes me so different-

DIAMOND:

I've seen signs on highways that say it better than I can

LEVINSON:

What are you two babbling about

ESTHER:

(flirting) -Y-you mean the ones that say, "Danger? stop, look and listen"-

DIAMOND:

Well? that fits. But I was thinking about curves and soft shoulders

LEVINSON:

(that's it) Oh no now you listen to me, Diamond! This is serious business!! A man's been killed in soft should- I mean Miss Blodgett's apartment! If you wanna take her on as a client, go ahead? but any questions from here on end will have to be gotten down at police headquarters-

ESTHER:

(indignant) You are taking me in Captain

LEVINSON Lieutenant! Yes, you'll have to come down for questioning

ESTHER:

Rick

DIAMOND:

You go along with the big, bad policeman, dear? I'll have you out in no time

ESTHER:

(near tears) -Well? all right? if you say so? b-but?(crying) this has never happened to me before-

DIAMOND:

(comforting her) Now, now

LEVINSON:

That's unfair

DIAMOND:

Walt

LEVINSON:

Stop blubbering

DIAMOND:

Walt

LEVINSON What

DIAMOND:

"tisks-tisks"

LEVINSON:

(to DIAMOND) Oh you get out of here

ESTHER:

cries even louder

LEVINSON:

(going off mike) -Otis! Where the devil is Otis!!! -

MFX

DIAMOND:

(narrating) I left Walt jumping up and down in front of Esther and the corpse and headed for 12 East 64th Street. It was an old brownstone in one of the wealthier districts. And when I rang the doorbell, I got another surprise?

SFX:

DOOR OPENS

MISS GIBSON:

Yes?

DIAMOND:

(liking what he sees) Yes. Don't tell me you're a schoolteacher-

MISS GIBSON:

I beg your pardon

DIAMOND:

Oh, forget it. It's the landmarks that threw me

MISS GIBSON:

-What do you want?

DIAMOND:

Do you know a Mr. Leland Gibson?

MISS GIBSON:

Yes, he's my father. Now just who are you?

DIAMOND:

Name's Diamond. I'm afraid I've got some bad news for you, Miss Gibson.

MISS GIBSON:

(getting upset) It's father- something's happened to father!

DIAMOND:

May I come in-

MISS GIBSON:

Oh, I'm terribly sorry. Yes

SFX:

DOOR CLOSES

MISS GIBSON:

Now please, what is it? What's happened to Dad

DIAMOND:

-Well, er? he's dead.

MISS GIBSON:

(quietly crying) Oh no? nooo-

DIAMOND:

-Now, look, I know this is tough, but you've got to help me. The police'll be here any minute.

MISS GIBSON:

(through tears) The police-

DIAMOND:

Yes. Your father was murdered

MISS GIBSON:

(gasps) Oh. I knew something like this would happen

DIAMOND:

You did? Well, tell me about it

MISS GIBSON:

-Well I-I don't mean I expected Dad to be? (begins crying again)

DIAMOND:

Okay now? just take your time. Cry it out.

MISS GIBSON:

I-I'm sorry. Have you a handkerchief-

DIAMOND:

Oh. Sure? here

MISS GIBSON:

(wiping/blowing her nose) Thank you

DIAMOND:

-Now? think you can talk about it?

MISS GIBSON:

Dad? left the house about three weeks ago and moved into a hotel-

DIAMOND:

Did you have a fight or something

MISS GIBSON:

Oh no, no. (starting to cry again) Everything was? fine? but

DIAMOND:

Now, now? hang on

MISS GIBSON:

Things couldn't have been better? And he was in wonderful spirits when he left

DIAMOND:

No arguments? No hard feelings? He didn't leave mad

MISS GIBSON:

Oh no, no? nothing like that

DIAMOND:

Then, er, do you have any idea why he suddenly packed up and moved into a hotel

MISS GIBSON:

Well, I'm not sure but? I think it was a woman

DIAMOND:

A woman

MISS GIBSON:

-Yes he? he told me one day he met someone he liked very much. The day after that, he moved into the hotel. I never saw her and he never said any more about her.

DIAMOND:

Weren't you a little worried?

MISS GIBSON:

Naturally. Father isn't a young man anymore? (starting to cry again) I mean, "wasn't"?

DIAMOND:

Just one more question. What hotel he move to?

MISS GIBSON:

It-it was the Adams on Madison Avenue. He used to go there three nights a week for dinner and a game of bridge before he decided to move in.

DIAMOND:

Well, thank you. Are you all alone?

MISS GIBSON:

(croaking this word out) Y-yes.

DIAMOND:

Got any friends you can call?

MISS GIBSON:

(crying) A few I guess?

DIAMOND:

Well, call them. It's better not to be alone. And bawl your head off. It'll do you some good.

MISS GIBSON:

(crying) I-I'll send you handkerchief Mr.-

DIAMOND:

-Diamond. Richard Diamond. It's in the book.

MFX

DIAMOND:

(narrating) For some reason I've got a talent for leaving people emotionally disturbed. Walt hops around like a rabbit in a cabbage patch. And Otis always tears his hair out by the hands-full. Miss Gibson was less active about it. She just tried to smile and fill enough grief to fill a tub. I grabbed another cab and headed for the Adams Hotel?

SFX:

HOTEL LOBBY NOISE

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

Yes, sir! Do you wish to register?

DIAMOND:

No, but I want to find out about someone who did, three weeks ago-

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

-Oh?

DIAMOND:

Yeah, "oh". A Mr. Leland Gibson-

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

Why, yes, he's staying at the hotel

DIAMOND:

From now on, that's past tense

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

Huh? I don't understand. He hasn't notified us that he's leaving

DIAMOND:

Well, that might be a little difficult. If you'll run down to the morgue, I think you'll find you're stuck with an empty room

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

-Er, morgue?

DIAMOND:

Yeah. Mr. Gibson has taken over one of the slabs? rent-free-

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

Oh my goodness! What happened

DIAMOND:

-He's kind of dead. When did you last see him?

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

-Early this morning. He left the hotel around ten.

DIAMOND:

Know where he was going?

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

Why no-

DIAMOND:

Do you remember him having any visitors in the last three weeks? A girl, I mean

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

(shocked/indignant) -No! Are you looking for a girl?

DIAMOND:

(it's going to be a long night) Er, yeah- Mr. Gibson's daughter seems to think he was running around with a woman since he moved into the hotel-

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

(getting it) Ohhhh

DIAMOND:

You say that like you knew what I was talking about

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

It was common gossip around the hotel

DIAMOND:

What was

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

Well, Mr. Gibson has been coming to the hotel for many years. He used to eat dinner here three nights a week, and then, play bridge with some of the hotel regulars. Now, about a month ago, we took on a new waitress

DIAMOND:

-Uh-huh-

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

Now it was very obvious that Mr. Gibson was quite taken by her! So much so, that he moved into the hotel and ate at her table every night

DIAMOND:

Oh? and what was her name

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

-Virginia Pelgram. Quite good-looking. About five feet. Brunette, very well-er-

DIAMOND:

Hmmm, I'd like to see her

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

-That's impossible. She left the hotel about a week after Mr. Gibson arrived!

DIAMOND:

Oh swell. Wasn't Mr. Gibson unhappy?

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

(very gossipy) Oh no! He was rather happy, in fact! (almost giggling) I believe he wanted her to move, so he could see her more often!!

DIAMOND:

Now? what makes you say that?

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

(very gossipy) Some of the things she said in the kitchen? to the other girls-

DIAMOND:

Do you know where she might have moved

ADAMS HOTEL CLERK:

-No? but-er- you might check with the flower shop! (with a giggle) Mr. Gibson used to send flowers everyday!!

DIAMOND:

(equally giggly) Well, thank you!!

MFX

DIAMOND:

(narrating) Well, I wasn't sure just where I was going, but if Virginia Pelgram was my best lead, then maybe she could tie the Gibson Murder up with a silk ribbon. I talked to the flower clerk and he gave me the address that the flowers had been sent to everyday. It was a nice apartment in the village? and the landlady stuck her nose out like she was trying to smell me instead of see who was calling?

LANDLADY:

Yes?

DIAMOND:

I hope that door doesn't slam shut sometime; you'll have a bloody nose for weeks-

LANDLADY:

-What do you want?

DIAMOND:

Roll out an eye with that nose and I'll show you my badge-

LANDLADY:

Aren't you cops ever polite to anyone

DIAMOND:

-Well, there's a face that goes with it! I'm looking for a girl, about five-foot-three, dark brunette-

LANDLADY:

You're in the wrong place

DIAMOND:

Her name's Pelgram

LANDLADY:

Oh her. She lives upstairs

DIAMOND:

She does, huh? Is she in now

LANDLADY:

No. Went out this morning. Hasn't come back

DIAMOND:

-And she probably won't. She have many visitors?

LANDLADY:

Only a couple? men.

DIAMOND:

That figures. Ever see an elderly man? Gray hair? About sixty-

LANDLADY:

Sure. Every day

DIAMOND:

Know his name

LANDLADY:

-No.

DIAMOND:

You said he had a couple of visitors; who else-

LANDLADY:

Another man. Young guy. Kind of greasy. Only came around a few times. The old man was there this morning. Had an argument

DIAMOND:

-Could you hear what they said?

LANDLADY:

I don't snoop-

DIAMOND:

Anyone else

LANDLADY:

-No-

DIAMOND:

Who paid her rent

LANDLADY:

-She did. Cash.

DIAMOND:

Mind if I take a look at her apartment-

LANDLADY:

Got a search warrant

DIAMOND:

-No-

LANDLADY:

Then you can't

DIAMOND:

Okay, thanks

SFX:

DOOR SLAMS CLOSE

DIAMOND:

-You've been charming.

MFX

DIAMOND:

(narrating) I left the old bat and headed back to the schoolteacher's apartment. If I was right, I'd seen set-ups like this before. But there was still the problem of finding out how Gibson was killed and how he got into a locked room. When I pulled up I saw the wagon, complete with corpse and coroner, pulling away from the morgue. And when I went in-

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK

DIAMOND:

(narrating) -And knocked on the door, I certain they had forgotten one of the bodies?

SFX:

DOOR OPENS

SGT. OTIS:

Ohh? it's you shamus-

DIAMOND:

Why Otis, they're leaving without you

SGT. OTIS:

Who is

DIAMOND:

The hearse! Shouldn't you be lying down or something

LEVINSON (walking up to the mike) -Now, you stop that Rick and get in here!

SFX:

DOOR CLOSING

DIAMOND:

Hello Walt? what's new?

ESTHER:

(coming up to the mike) Well, Rick-

DIAMOND:

-Well Esther! Has Otis been using his rubber hose on you?

ESTHER:

Oh no, no, but? I was getting lonesome! I'm glad you're getting back so soon-

DIAMOND:

(flirtatiously) You are

LEVINSON:

-As soon as you two quit rolling your eyes at each other, maybe you can tell me what you found out, Mr. Diamond?

DIAMOND:

(sighing) Yeah. Well, send Otis down to the station for a search warrant; then tell'em to get over to 9 West 12th Street and see what he can find in a Miss Virginia Pelgram's apartment-

LEVINSON:

-Who's Virginia Pelgram?

DIAMOND:

The only person who was mixed-up with the murdered man. There was another man who used to see her, but I can't find out who he was-

LEVINSON:

-All right? Otis, go get the warrant!

SGT. OTIS:

(going off mike) Yeah, Lieutenant? thanks Diamond-

SFX:

DOOR OPENING/CLOSING

DIAMOND:

(calling off mike) -A pleasure Sergeant! (to LEVINSON) What did you find out, Walt?

LEVINSON:

There were eleven people in the building at the time of the killing; none of them ever saw the guy before. Here's a list of the names? three people on this floor, five on the second, and three more on the third-

DIAMOND:

Have you talked to the landlady

LEVINSON:

Certainly. She doesn't know any more about it than the rest

DIAMOND:

What about that funny brown lint on the dead man's clothes

LEVINSON:

We're checking on that right now. The lab said they'd call me

DIAMOND:

-Did the landlady say she had a key to this apartment?

LEVINSON:

Sure, sure, but she hasn't used it but once since Miss Blodgett was away at girl's camp-

DIAMOND:

-When did she use it?

LEVINSON:

Three days ago, when she had to let the painters in. And she says that the windows and door were definitely locked! Because after she let the painters out, she locked them herself-

DIAMOND:

Painter, huh

ESTHER:

Yes, and I've been looking you know, I think they've been doing a terrible job! Why the kitchen alone-

DIAMOND:

-Esther dear?

ESTHER:

Yes, Rick?

DIAMOND:

Later dear.

ESTHER:

(blushing) Yes, Rick.

DIAMOND:

Walt, did they paint the whole building?

LEVINSON:

They finished the second floor today-

SFX:

PHONE RINGS TWICE/PHONE BEING PICKED UP

LEVINSON:

-Oh, I'll get it Miss Blodgett? probably the lab? (off-mike during the next few lines of dialogue until phone hangs up)? yeah? Yeah? I see? okay, thanks.

ESTHER:

(stage whispering to DIAMOND) Rick, do you know who did it?

DIAMOND:

(charmingly) I got a hunch.

ESTHER:

(sighing) Ohh, you're wonderful!

DIAMOND:

(with a big smile) Yeah?

SFX:

PHONE HANGS UP

DIAMOND:

(calling off mike) Lab, Walt?

LEVINSON:

Yeah. That lint you spotted on the dead man's clothes is from the mat that they put on the rugs-

DIAMOND:

(thinking) -Um-hm. Walt, you were on all the floors; did one of the apartments have a rug missing?

LEVINSON:

They're all missing from the second floor. The tenants took them down to the basement when the painters moved in-

DIAMOND:

Any off this floor or the third

LEVINSON:

-No, just the second.

DIAMOND:

Well, your killers are on the second floor, Walt-

LEVINSON:

-How do you figure?

DIAMOND:

Well, let's look at what we got; a dead body in a locked room. Blood on body and floor around body, but nowhere else in the room. Carried in-

LEVINSON:

In a rug

DIAMOND:

-Bull's-eye-

ESTHER:

(getting carried away) Ohh, this is so exciting

DIAMOND:

-Er, Esther.

ESTHER:

(sighs) Sorry-

LEVINSON:

Yeah, but how does a dame called "Pelgram" figure into it. There's no "Pelgram" listed in this building

DIAMOND:

Well, there shouldn't be, if I'm right. The dead man met Virginia Pelgram when she was a waitress working in his hotel. She gave him a pitch and he fell. He put her up in an apartment so he could he see her more often

LEVINSON:

So what

DIAMOND:

I think she was working with another man! A man who was seen around her apartment by the landlady

LEVINSON:

-Then how did the body get over here?

DIAMOND:

The guy the dame was working with probably lives here!

LEVINSON:

What about the motive?

DIAMOND:

Well, my guess is that Gibson was being blackmailed. And he followed the girl here. He was probably going to yell "Cop!" so they killed him-

LEVINSON:

Okay, now what about the locked room? Explain that

DIAMOND:

I'll let the landlady of this building explain it, Walt. Go ask her one question? Who had this apartment before Miss Blodgett

ESTHER:

-Er, "Esther"-

DIAMOND:

-Oh, I'm sorry? "Esther"-

ESTHER:

Oh, I can tell you that? a Mr. and Mrs. Austin! They moved to a smaller apartment and let me have this one. It's more rent and they couldn't afford it, I expect this is a better apartment, though- it has very-

DIAMOND:

Esther

ESTHER:

-Hmm?

DIAMOND:

What apartment did they take?

ESTHER:

Oh? it's on the next floor. Apartment 209.

DIAMOND:

According to this list of people who were on the second floor at the time of the killing, the Austins are the only couple. What did Mrs. Austin look like, Walt?

LEVINSON:

Oh, about five-foot three, dark brunette, very? very well-

DIAMOND:

Say no more. C'mon Walt

ESTHER:

Er, may I come

DIAMOND:

(breaking it to her gently) -N-no, Esther? you stay here; I'll be back later to discuss the better features of your apartment?

MFX

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK/DOOR OPEN

HARVEY:

Yeah?

LEVINSON:

I want to talk you again, Mr. Austin.

HARVEY:

Why? I told you everything I know-

DIAMOND:

Where's your wife

HARVEY:

In the back

LEVINSON:

We're coming in

SFX:

DOOR SLAM

HARVEY:

Okay, you don't have to shove

VIRGINIA:

(coming up to mike) Who izzit Harve

HARVEY:

Eh, them cops again

DIAMOND:

Hello Virginia

VIRGINIA:

Do I know you

LEVINSON:

-Where's your rug, Mr. Austin?

HARVEY:

(stopped short) It's? down in th'basement.

DIAMOND:

Miss Pelgram, how long have you been married to this man?

VIRGINIA:

About three- hey, how'd you know-

HARVEY:

Shaddup

DIAMOND:

(completing her question) Know your name? You might as well tell the lieutenant everything. Why did you lie about not knowing Mr. Gibson

VIRGINIA:

-I didn't? I-I never saw him before in my life-

LEVINSON:

I didn't tell you the dead man's name was Gibson! How'd you know that

HARVEY:

Don't answer that

DIAMOND:

(to HARVEY) Oh shut up! (to VIRGINIA) You and your husband killed Mr. Gibson and carted him downstairs in a rug

HARVEY:

Why would we do that

DIAMOND:

Because the painters were on their way to paint your apartment and you had to get him out without being seen. You dumped him in Miss Blodgett's apartment because you knew she was out of town! And you used to live there so you still had a key

VIRGINIA:

How

HARVEY:

Just shaddup

LEVINSON:

We got enough to hold both of you on. The rug will have bloodstains on it

VIRGINIA:

(gasps)

HARVEY:

(trying to leave) Get outta my way get out- get outta my way?

SFX:

STRUGGLE/PUNCH/BODY FALLS TO THE FLOOR

DIAMOND:

Why Walt! You're so rough-

LEVINSON:

Yeah

VIRGINIA:

(desperately) -I-I didn't kill him- Harvey did- I didn't kill him-

LEVINSON:

Okay, okay, you can tell me all about it down at the station

SFX:

FOOTSTEPS

LEVINSON:

Hey, where are you going

DIAMOND:

-It's six-thirty; I got a date-

LEVINSON (from off mike) What about Miss Blodgett? She's gonna get lonesome again

DIAMOND:

-Ah, she was born that way; I've gotta see a girl who's going to hold a pretty interesting class of her own! Bye!

MFX

SFX:

DOOR OPENING

HELEN:

(breathy) Hi-

DIAMOND:

-Hi? well, don't you look comfortable. Where's Francis?

HELEN:

I gave him the night off, like you suggested-

SFX:

DOOR CLOSING

DIAMOND:

-You're cute.

HELEN:

I've got a cool dinner in the library-

DIAMOND:

(singing) School Days, School Days

HELEN:

You sound happy

DIAMOND:

I was just thinking about a schoolteacher I knew once. (noticing dinner) Hmmm, that looks toothy

HELEN:

Sing for your supper

DIAMOND:

Wha

HELEN:

Got a new tune on the piano

DIAMOND:

Aw honey, I'm hungry

HELEN:

-You sing first and then you can eat.

DIAMOND:

Oh. All right, what is it-

HELEN:

Right here

MFX:

PLAYS A FEW CHORDS

HELEN:

-"So In Love"-

DIAMOND:

Okay

MFX:

DIAMOND: SINGS

DIAMOND:

Strange dear, but true dear,
When I'm close to you dear,
The stars fill the sky!
So in love with you am I-

SFX:

PHONE RINGS

HELEN:

-Aww, keep going. I'll get it.

DIAMOND:

Even without you,
My arms fold about you!
You know darling why.
So in love with you, am I.

MFX:

DIAMOND: STOPS SINGING

HELEN:

That was some girl asking for you-

DIAMOND:

(feigning surprise) Ohh, some girl? well

HELEN:

I told her there was no one here but the guitar tuner

DIAMOND:

(still playing dumb) Oh? She leave her name

HELEN:

-Uh-huh. "Hepplewhite"-

DIAMOND:

(sounding it out) -"Hepplewhite"-

HELEN:

Yes

DIAMOND:

(still playing dumb) -Hm-

HELEN:

-Who's she?

DIAMOND:

Um? c'mere baby-

HELEN:

No! I want to know who she is

DIAMOND:

-I said "c'mere"-

HELEN:

(giggling) -No!

THEY KISS

HELEN:

(sighing) Ricky??

DIAMOND:

Uh-hm?

HELEN (softly) Who's Hepplewhite?

DIAMOND:

Oh, just a chair baby? a cute blonde chair?

MFX

EDDIE KING:

You've just heard "Richard Diamond, Private Detective"! Starring Dick Powell, transcribed! Helen was played by Virginia Gregg, Lieutenant Levinson by Ed Begley. Not Ed Begley Jr., but Ed Begley Jr.'s father. Also in our cast were Will S. Herbert, Georgia Ellis, Tony Barrett, Joan Banks, and Norman Field. Music was under the direction of Frank Worth. "Richard Diamond" is written by Blake Edwards. Yes, that Blake Edwards. Now, this is Eddie King reminding you that Dick Powell will soon be seen in the screen version of the best-seller novel "Mrs. Mike" and inviting you to be with us again at this same time next week, when we will again bring you Dick Powell as "Richard Diamond, Private Detective"!

MFX