The Defenders Poster

(1961–1965)

Episode List

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Season 1

16 Sep. 1961
Quality of Mercy
The Prestons defend a doctor accused of the "mercy-killing" of an infant with Down's Syndrome (then called "Mongolism").
 
23 Sep. 1961
Killer Instinct
When mild-mannered Jim McLeery kills an abusive stranger, it seems a clear-cut case of self-defense. But the prosecution reveals that, in his army days, McCleery was trained to kill.
 
30 Sep. 1961
Death Across the Counter
The Prestons defend a man charged with murdering a storekeeper during a robbery, but they strongly disagree over his guilt. The drug-addicted client was found unconscious at the scene with the murder weapon in his hand. Lawrence believes he definitely committed the act and only hopes to plead for a lesser sentence, but Kenneth believes the man may be completely innocent of the murder.
 
7 Oct. 1961
The Riot
Inmates riot at a prison cell block, taking four hostages and threatening to kill them unless their demands are met. At the request of one of the riot's leaders, the warden asks Lawrence Preston to negotiate for the prisoners.
 
14 Oct. 1961
The Young Lovers
A teenage boy is charged with abandoning his baby whom he left on a doctor's doorstep. He claims he thought the baby was dead, but it was actually alive and died after its discovery. To make matters worse, he refuses to identify the baby's mother, even though he claims he is married to her.
 
21 Oct. 1961
The Boy Between
The Prestons are hired by a stage actress who wants full custody of her son, and does not even want to grant visitation rights to the boy's father. But she refuses to tell them the full reason why, although Kenneth suspects that the father may be suicidal.
 
28 Oct. 1961
The Hundred Lives of Harry Simms
An impressionist is charged with killing his fiancee, but his inability to stop going into character impersonations, even in court, leads Lawrence to feel that he has lost his hold on reality, and that he killed in one of his impersonations.
 
4 Nov. 1961
The Accident
When a boy is hit by a car and thus becomes in dire need of surgery, his parents refuse to allow it for religious reasons. The Prestons, who are representing the young woman who hit the boy, work desperately to find a judge who will overrule the parents and allow surgery.
 
11 Nov. 1961
The Trial of Jenny Scott
The Prestons defend a woman accused of the murder of her husband. The main witness against her is a close friend who seems sympathetic to her, yet claims the victim telephoned him after he was shot and named her as the one who shot him.
 
18 Nov. 1961
The Man with the Concrete Thumb
Ken Preston defends his girlfriend, social worker Joan Miller, after protests against the actions of an autocratic urban planner have led to a man being injured.
 
25 Nov. 1961
The Treadmill
A man who has spent 25 years as a patient in a mental home is released - only to be arrested on a charge of murder dating from before his confinement, and scheduled to be executed.
 
2 Dec. 1961
Perjury
When a defense witness is caught out in a lie on the stand, he insists that Lawrence Preston told him to do it.
 
9 Dec. 1961
The Attack
The Prestons defend a policeman who killed the teenage boy that attacked his five-year-old daughter. The officer stubbornly insists he had a right to do it and most of his neighbors agree with him.
 
16 Dec. 1961
The Prowler
Dwight Harkavy has killed a prowler on his property - the ex-husband of his young wife.
 
23 Dec. 1961
Gideon's Follies
Rich Mr. Gideon has recently married for the sixth time, and has invited all his slightly flaky ex-wives to meet his new spouse. Then he gets murdered. Police charge the new Mrs. Gideon, and the Prestons defend her---in an unusual way.
 
30 Dec. 1961
The Best Defense
As a favor to an old friend, a disbarred alcoholic attorney trying to get a new start, Lawrence agrees, after some hesitancy, to defend his client---a racketeer charged with the murder of a rival.
 
6 Jan. 1962
The Bedside Murder
After agreeing to leave a large sum of money to her doctor, a wealthy woman dies. Did the doctor murder her to get the inheritance?
 
20 Jan. 1962
The Search
A man confesses to a murder for which someone else has already been executed---a man Lawrence defended. Lawrence tries to find out what went wrong.
 
27 Jan. 1962
Storm at Birch Glen
A young inmate at a reform school is found beaten, and his cottage "duke" orders him to say it was his cottage supervisor who beat him. The boy dies, and the Prestons defend the supervisor, but find resistance from others at the school and in the neighboring town.
 
3 Feb. 1962
The Point Shaver
The Prestons defend a sports star accused of fixing a game.
 
10 Feb. 1962
The Locked Room
The emphasis is on a jury as it deliberates the fate of a woman accused of killing her husband's apparent mistress.
 
17 Feb. 1962
The Empty Chute
An army sergeant is charged with murdering a fellow officer by cutting the lines in his parachute, thus causing it not to open when he jumped. He requests the Prestons to assist in his defense even though they are civilians.
 
24 Feb. 1962
The Crusader
Convinced the original trial was rushed, Kenneth decides to reopen the case of a man who has just been denied parole after serving 12 years in prison for rape.
 
3 Mar. 1962
The Hickory Indian
Lawrence Preston finds himself opposed in court by his old law teacher, the famous Professor Hopkins.
 
10 Mar. 1962
The Iron Man
A college law professor asks the Prestons to defend a campus fascist leader accused of ordering the beating of a student who took issue with his speech. The professor and both Prestons despise the defendant's beliefs, but feel he must be represented in court.
 
17 Mar. 1962
The Tarnished Cross
Lawrence Preston finds himself trying to save a man from the "justice" of a kangaroo court.
 
31 Mar. 1962
The Last Six Months
Kenneth decides to defend a dying man who strangled his business partner after the partner refused to provide for the man's family after his death.
 
7 Apr. 1962
The Naked Heiress
A woman finagles a drunken college professor into leaving his entire estate to her daughter, a stripper whom the professor had fallen for. Shortly afterward the professor falls in front of a subway train. Lawrence and Kenneth both go to court to contest the new will, but as Ken comes to know the daughter better he decides he does not want to hurt her in the process.
 
21 Apr. 1962
Reunion with Death
Lawrence is called to a luncheon with six Korean War Air Force veterans, ostensibly for legal advice. But soon after he arrives he learns the real reason: they want him to act as defense counsel as they "try" one of the group for treason because they believe he gave secrets to the enemy under torture.
 
28 Apr. 1962
The Benefactor
The Prestons defend a doctor arrested by the police for performing illegal abortions.
 
5 May 1962
Along Came a Spider
The Prestons defend a retired vaudevillian who is accused of murdering his son-in-law. The main witness is the accused man's nine-year-old granddaughter.
 
26 May 1962
The Broken Barrelhead
The problems the Prestons are having in defending young Peter Crewe are made considerably worse by the attempts of Crewe's father to bribe a juror.
 

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