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Peter Panfeld

The Big Story

Peter Panfeld

May 02 1951



CAST:

NARRATOR 

PETER PANFELD, reporter

BURKEY, police lieutenant 

ELSA 

FRANK

OWNER 

WHEELER 

MORALES 

JOE 

GRADY 

LOPEZ 

GROUP plus two announcers, CHAPPELL and HARRICE





CHAPPELL: PELL-MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES present .. THE BIG STORY! 


(MUSIC: FANFARE) 


(GENTLE SNORING UNDER) 


ELSA: (LOW, FRIGHTENED) Frank! Frank, wake up! 


FRANK: (ROUSING) Huh? Oh. What's the matter, Elsa? 


ELSA: I just heard someone moving around in the kitchen. 


FRANK: (ANNOYED) All you heard was the cat. Go back to sleep, Elsa. 


ELSA: But I tell you, someone's in there. I'm sure of it! 


FRANK: (IRRITATED) All right, all right. (SLEEPY YAWN) If it'll make you feel any better, I'll put on my slippers and have a look ... 


(A SLIGHT PAUSE) 

(THEN WE HEAR PADDING OF SLIPPERS ACROSS FLOOR.) 


ELSA: (CALLING, A LITTLE OFF) Dear, be careful...


FRANK: (ON MIKE, WE'RE WITH HIM) Of what? The cat? 


(DOOR OPENS) 


FRANK: (A BEAT) What the devil...? 


(WE HEAR A SCUFFLE, GRUNTING, STRUGGLE. SUDDEN CRASH OF FURNITURE. A GROAN, AND BODY THUD. WE HEAR RUNNING STEPS ACROSS FLOOR, SCREEN DOOR OPENS AND SLAMS SHUT.) 


ELSA: (OFF A LITTLE) Frank! (COMING IN) Frank, what... NO! (A HIGH-PITCHED SCREAM AND INTO) 


(MUSIC: CURTAIN)


CHAPPELL: THE BIG STORY. Here is America! Its sound and its fury, its joy and its sorrow, as faithfully reported by the men and women of the great American newspapers. (FLAT) San Antonio, Texas. From the pages of the San Antonio Light, the story of a reporter who passed around a hat .. and collected a killer. Tonight, to Peter Panfeld of the San Antonio Light, for his Big Story, goes the PELL MELL Award!


(MUSIC: TURNTABLE)


GROUP: Guard against throat-scratch! Guard against throat-scratch! Guard against throat-scratch! Enjoy the smooth smooth smoking of fine tobaccos. Smoke a PELL MELL.


CHAPPELL: Yes, smoke PELL MELL - the cigarette whose mildness you can measure. 


HARRICE: Puff by puff you're always ahead when you smoke PELL MELL.


CHAPPELL: Remember this - the further a puff of smoke is filtered through fine tobaccos, the milder it becomes. At the first puff PELL MELL smoke is filtered further than that of any other leading cigarette. Moreover, after 5 puffs, or 10, or 15, or 17 - by actual measure - PELL MELL'S greater length of traditionally fine tobaccos still travels the smoke further - filters the smoke and makes it mild. 


HARRICE: Thus, PELL MELL'S fine mellow tobaccos give you a smoothness, mildness and satisfaction no other cigarette offers you. 


CHAPPELL: Smoke PELL MELL - the cigarette whose mildness you can measure. PELL MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES - "Outstanding!" 


HARRICE: And - they are mild!


(MUSIC: INTRO AND UNDER)


CHAPPELL: San Antonio, Texas .. the story as it actually happened .... Peter Panfeld's story, as he lived it ... 


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: You are Peter Panfeld, once with the Brooklyn Eagle, and now a police reporter for the San Antonio Light. It is a long way from Brooklyn to Texas. But you and your blond and beautiful wife, Rose, took a vacation trip to San Antonio, liked it, and stayed for good. This is your background. But your Big Story begins one morning, at the office. 


(PHONE RING) 

(RECEIVER OFF HOOK) 


PETER: Hello? Panfeld.


BURKEY: (FILTER) Pete, Art Burkey. Police Headquarters. Put on your hat and get going! 


PETER: Why? 


BURKEY: This is something big, Pete, and I'm tipping you off first. The Phantom pulled a job over on Aransas Street. 


PETER: (ALERT) The Phantom Burglar


BURKEY: That's right. Only from here in, you can change his name for the headlines. 


PETER: To what? 


BURKEY: To the Phantom Killer!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: The Phantom! This is the thief who has set San Antonio into an uproar, and driven the police crazy. This is the thief who has pulled robbery after robbery, and slipped away like a shadow in the night. And now, he has added something else to terrorize the community. Murder. You get to the wooden frame house on Aransas Street. And your close friend, Detective Art Burkey, is standing over a body covered by a white sheet, in the kitchen... 


PETER: What's the dead man's name, Art? 


BURKEY: Mallon. Frank Mallon. Stabbed to death, artery severed. You can see how he bled. 


PETER: How do you know it's the phantom? 


BURKEY: Who else could it be? He's hit this neighborhood ten times before. And he used the same gimmick getting in... 


PETER: Cutting a hole in the screen, and unhooking the catch from the inside, eh?


BURKEY: Yeah. 


PETER: Any witnesses? 


BURKEY: His wife. She's in the next room, too hysterical to talk, we'll get to her later. Meanwhile, take a look at this. 


PETER: Hmmm. One of those pen-type flashlights. 


BURKEY: That's right. Used it to throw a small beam. He must have dropped it when Mallon jumped him in the kitchen here.


PETER: And no fingerprints. 


BURKEY: No. The Phantom wears gloves, Pete, we haven't been able to find a single print on any job he's pulled.


PETER: Well, Art, this time the heat's on. Wait'll San Antonio hears about this! 


BURKEY: You don't have to tell me. If we don't wrap up the Phantom soon, you may see a lot of us in uniform again! (SIGHS) Well, let's go in and see what we can get out of Mrs. Mallon!


(MUSIC: BRIDGE) 


ELSA: (STILL WITH A TRACE OF TEARS AND HYSTERIA) I...I heard this noise in the kitchen, you see. My...my husband thought it was just the cat and .. and... 


BURKEY: (GENTLY) Go on, Mrs. Mallon. 


ELSA: He went in, and the next thing I knew, they were fighting. Then the man stabbed Frank, and ran out through the screen door, across the garden...


BURKEY: Did you get a look at the killer? 


ELSA: I....I, no. It was dark. I only saw him as a shadow. But he was wearing a hat, and he wasn't very tall. That's all I know, Lieutenant, that's all I remember, except I saw him run out through the hedge.


BURKEY: (SIGHS) I see.


ELSA: (RISING) You've got to catch him, you've got to. (BREAKS DOWN, SOBBING) Why did I make Frank go into the kitchen, if I hadn't made him go in there... (SOBBING, CAN'T GO ON) 


BURKEY: (A BEAT, THEN QUIETLY) Pete. 


PETER: Yes, Art? 


BURKEY: Let's have a look in the garden!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


PETER: Art... 


BURKEY: Yeah? 


PETE: Something's caught here in the hedge... 


BURKEY: Wait a minute. (CUTS AND THEN) Why, it's a hat! 


PETER: Yeah. The killer's hat. The branches on this hedge must have knocked it off his head when he ran through. 


BURKEY: Let's take a good look at it. (A PAUSE) Hmmm. Black... porkpie shape, narrow brim. 


PETER: And made out of cheap felt. Any trade mark on the inside? 


BURKEY: No. 


PETER: No store label? 


BURKEY: No. 


PETER: Any size tag? 


BURKEY: Six and one half. 


PETER: Six and one half. (A BEAT) Art, that's as small as they come. You can't buy a hat any smaller than that, in any ordinary store. 


BURKEY: How do you know? 


PETER: You can take it from me. I had a friend who ran a hat store back in Brooklyn. And look, there's even some newspaper stuck in the sweat band, to make it fit tightly. 


BURKEY: (SLOWLY) In other words, there's one thing we do know now.. 


PETER: Yeah. The Phantom's a man with a small head!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: Somewhere in a city of half a million people, somewhere in San Antonio, the Phantom's hiding out.. if he's still in town. Art Burkey briefs his patrolmen, and he puts it on the line... 


(MURMUR UP AND DOWN) 


BURKEY: (PROJECTS A LITTLE) Now, listen, men. We've already alerted the Texas State Highway Patrol and the Rangers, as well as the Border Patrol, just in case he slipped through and hit for the Mexican border. But for all we know, he may still be right here in town.. and if he is we're going to find him, we've got to find him.... 


(MURMUR UP AND DOWN) 


BURKEY: Now, here's the Phantom's hat. Size six and one half. Take a good look at it. It's a small size. I want the owner of this hat. And I want him, dead or alive!


(CROWD BUZZ UP HIGH AND INTO)


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: The manhunt begins. The press and the police have always cooperated closely in San Antonio, and the reporters join in. The order is plain. Find the phantom! And you, Peter Panfeld of the Light, write your first lead..... 


(TYPEWRITER, ESTABLISH AND FADE UNDER) 


PETER: Today a man named Frank Mallon lies dead, stabbed to death in cold blood. And today, the Phantom Burglar has a new name.. the Phantom Killer. Police are systematically checking hotels and rooming houses....


(MUSIC: SWEEPS UP AND UNDER) 


NARR: But the big clue is the small black hat. And with others, you, Peter Panfeld, start to check one hat store after another. A day passes. Two. Three. Nothing. But on the fourth day, in a cheap clothing shop on the west side... 


OWNER: A black hat? Six and one half? Almost never sell a hat that small, Mister. Don't even carry the size in stock. 


PETER: Then you never sold a hat that small to anyone? 


OWNER: Why, I can't say that I ... (CUTS) Wait a minute. Wait a minute. I'm wrong about that! 


PETER: Yes? 


OWNER: Come to think of it, I did have an order for a six and one half! 


PETER: When? 


OWNER: About a year ago, maybe more. 


PETER: Do you remember who bought it? 


OWNER: Nope. I wouldn't know his name. 


PETER: What'd he look like? Do you remember anything about him? 


OWNER: Well, I recollect he was short and swarthy.


PETER: Anything else? 


OWNER: Nope. That's all I remember, Mister! Like I told you, it was a year ago. 


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER) 


NARR: You notify Art Burkey, then go back to the paper, think it over. A small-size black hat, a pen-type flashlight, short and swarthy. Put them together, and you have the Phantom. But who is he? Who is he? 


(KNOCK ON DOOR) 


PETER: Come in .... 


(DOOR OPENS) 


WHEELER: Mr. Panfeld? 


PETER: Yes? 


WHEELER: My name is Wheeler .. Charles Wheeler. 


PETER: What can I do for you, Mr. Wheeler. 


WHEELER: I...I'm a neighbor of Mr. Mallon's .. the man who the Phantom killed. I...I read your story, and well, I think I may have some information... 


PETER: Sit down, Mr. Wheeler. (PAUSE) 


WHEELER: I...well, sir, I was drivin' home late from a Lodge Meeting. I'd just turned the car into Aransas Street. And then... (NERVOUS) 


PETER: Go on.


WHEELER: My headlights hit the high hedge around the Mallon garden. I saw a man hurryin' along the hedge, looked like he'd busted through, or somethin', I'm almost sure he did. Anyway, he put his hand over his face, but before he did, I got a look at his face. 


PETER: And? 


WHEELER: And I recognized him. His name's Morales..Jimmy Morales. 


PETER: Morales, eh? Is he short and swarthy? 


WHEELER: That's right. Lives over the other side of town, on Riaz street. 


PETER: Why didn't you bring in this information before? 


WHEELER: Mr. Panfeld, I'll be frank with you. I'm not a brave man, I've got a family, a wife and two children. This man Morales, he's been mixed up in one or two scrapes already, in the neighborhood. I didn't want to go to the police, for fear he'd heard I tipped them off. 


PETER: And that's why you came to me, eh? 


WHEELER: Yes. Please, Mr. Panfeld, don't let it get around that I was an informer.... 


PETER: It's the duty of every public spirited citizen to be an informer where a killer is concerned, Mr. Wheeler. The fact that you delayed at all may ruin our chances of nailing the Phantom now... 


(RECEIVER OFF HOOK) 


PETER: Mary. Get me Detective Art Burkey at police headquarters.. right away!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER) 


NARR: You and Art Burkey go to Morales' house, on Riaz Street. You're carrying a package .. and he's carrying a gun. On the sidewalk, he draws the gun, and turns to you... 


BURKEY: Better stay out here on the sidewalk, Pete. 


PETER: No. I'm going in with you. 


BURKEY: Look. I've gotta figure I'm goin' to run into trouble. If this Morales is the Phantom, he may start shooting. I don't want a dead reporter on my hands, especially a friend of mine. 


PETER: (QUIETLY) We're wasting time out here, Art. Let's go ....


BURKEY: Okay.... 


(WE HEAR STEPS ON SIDEWALK. CHANGE QUALITY AS STEPS GO UP WOODEN STAIRS, ONTO WOODEN PORCH, THEN STOP.) 


BURKEY: Get to one side, Pete. 


PETER: But....


BURKEY: (SNAPS) Get to one side, I said!


PETER: All right. 


(WE HEAR RING OF DOORBELL WITHIN) 

(A PAUSE) 

(DOOR OPENS) 


MORALES: Yeah. What do you ... 


BURKEY: (SHARP) Up with those hands, Morales! 


MORALES: Wait a minute! What is this? 


BURKEY: Go on .. get inside!


(DOOR CLOSE) 


MORALES: Who do you guys think you are?


BURKEY: Police. Mr. Phantom! 


MORALES: Me? Hey, what kind of frameup is this? Who told you that malarkey. You can't pin anything on me. You're both nuts. I don't know a thing about the Phantom! 


BURKEY: You were seen coming through the Mallon hedge the night he was murdered, Morales. 


MORALES: That's a lie. That's a dirty lie. 


BURKEY: Don't give us that. We've got a witness to prove it. A man in a car saw you in his headlights. 


MORALES: Okay. Okay. I did come through the hedge. But I didn't kill Mallon or anyone else. I had a date with a maid over on the next street. It was late, I didn't want to walk all the way around the corner, so I cut through the hedge toward the bus stop and.... 


BURKEY: You're a liar! 


MORALES: I tell ya, this is a straight story. If you think I'm the Phantom, you've crazy with the heat, see? You can't come bustin' in here and ...


BURKEY: Pete! 


PETER: Yes, Art? 


BURKEY: Take that hat out of the package. 


PETER: Right. 


(RUSTLING OF PAPER)


BURKEY: Now.. try the hat on his head.. just for size.


MORALES: Hey, what kind of crazy business is this? 


PETER: Take it easy. (A LONG BEAT) Art, look. It's three sizes too small for him!


(MUSIC: CURTAIN INTO)


(MUSIC: TURNTABLE)


GROUP: Guard against throat-scratch! Guard against throat-scratch! Guard against throat-scratch! Enjoy the smooth smooth smoking of fine tobaccos. Smoke a PELL MELL.


CHAPPELL: Yes, smoke PELL MELL - the cigarette whose mildness you can measure. 


HARRICE: Puff by puff you're always ahead when you smoke PELL MELL.


CHAPPELL: At the first puff PELL MELL smoke is filtered further than that of any other leading cigarette. Moreover, after 5 puffs, or 10, or 15, or 17 - by actual measure - PELL MELL'S greater length of traditionally fine tobaccos still travels the smoke further - filters the smoke and makes it mild. 


HARRICE: Thus, PELL MELL'S fine mellow tobaccos give you a smoothness, mildness and satisfaction no other cigarette offers you. 


CHAPPELL: Guard against throat-scratch! 


HARRICE: Enjoy the smooth smoking of fine tobaccos.


CHAPPELL: Smoke PELL MELL - the cigarette whose mildness you can measure. PELL MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES - "Outstanding!" 


HARRICE: And - they are mild!


(MUSIC: INTRO AND UNDER)


HARRICE: This is Cy Harrice returning you to your narrator, and the Big Story of Peter Panfeld..as he lived it, and wrote it. 


NARR: You, Peter Panfeld of the San Antonio Light, and Detective Art Burkey, are stunned when the hat doesn't fit Jimmy Morales. Just to be sure, you check on his story about visiting a maid that night, and it turns out to be true. And so the Phantom is still...the Phantom. Then, a couple of days later, you are in Burkey's office at headquarters. 


PETER: Anything new, Art? 


BURKEY: Not a thing, Pete. Nothing but phone calls, phony leads, just as Wheeler's was about Morales. People are seeing everything from pixies to the ghosts of their great-grandmothers. 


PETER: You can't blame 'em. They're just plain scared. 


BURKEY: I know, I know. 


PETER: I wonder if there's some kind of lead we can get out of this pen-type flashlight.


BURKEY: Not a chance. They sell hundreds of them in town. 


PETER: That brings us back to the hat. 


BURKEY: Yeah. We always get back to the hat. So where do we go from there? 


PETER: Say, Art, I just got an idea! This hat was blocked and cleaned lately. You can still get a whiff of the cleaning fluid. 


BURKEY: Well? What of it?


PETER: I was thinking, maybe we ought to check the hat-cleaning places in town. Maybe we could dig up an identification, maybe somebody would remember. 


BURKEY: Oh, sure. They'd remember a short, swarthy man. But San Antonio is full of short, dark men, Pete. Thousands of them. 


PETER: It's worth a try. 


BURKEY: Maybe. But I'm not going to assign any men to it, not now. I've got 'em combing every dive and cheap rooming house in town, and that's what they're going to keep on doing. My theory is that if we find the Phantom at all, he'll be holed up in one of those dives. 


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: The idea you have still needles you, Peter Panfeld. You think about it awhile, and then you decide, there's a chance, just a chance. So, you start checking the hat cleaning establishments in town, one by one... street by street... 


(MUSIC: ACCENT UP AND UNDER)


PETER: Main Plaza, Trevino, Galan Streets.....no lead - 


(MUSIC: ACCENT UP AND UNDER)


PETER: South San Saba, West Commerce.....Haymarket Plaza - no lead.


(MUSIC: ACCENT AND UNDER)


NARR: Barber shops, shoe repair shops, anyplace where they might clean hats. And you get nothing but tired feet, Peter Panfeld, and an idea that you must have been crazy to start this in the first place. And then, at a little one-man hat cleaning and shoeshine place celled Joe's, while you're getting a shine .... 


(FLIP OF SHOE-SHINING CLOTH, AS IT SHINES, THEN FINAL CRACK OF CLOTH...) 


JOE: There you are, Mister. Good as new, best shoeshine in town. 


PETER: Thanks. You own this place? 


JOE: Is mine. I am Joe. 


PETER: You clean hats, too, eh? 


JOE: Best job in San Antonio. Quick service, Number One. You want me to clean your hat? 


PETER: No, I don't think so -


JOE: Hat's pretty dirty. I clean fast.


PETER: Joe, you ever clean a really small hat?


JOE: How small?


PETER: Small enough so you had a hard time putting it on that block. Say, size six and one half.


JOE: Sure. One feller come in here with hat like that. 


PETER: Was it a black hat? 


JOE: Is black, sure.


PETER: Was he short and dark? 


JOE: Short and dark, sure. With the squint eyes. 


PETER: The eyes had a squint? You're sure? 


JOE: Sure I am sure, Mister. This man come into my place once in a while, for the shine. An' he come in a week ago, to clean the hat. 


PETER: What's his name?


JOE: Mister, why you ask me all these questions. Who are you?


PETER: Joe, this is important. Do you know his name? 


JOE: His name is not my business, Mister. He come in, he ask me to clean the hat, I clean the hat. He ask me to shine the shoe, I shine the shoe. I don't ask his name. 


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: Short and dark, with a squint to the eyes. You have covered many a case in San Antonio, you've seen many a criminal go behind bars. And now, a nerve throbs, a picture takes a frame in the back of your head, a memory stirs.... 


PETER: Steve Lopez! Conviction, burglary. Short, dark, and a squint to the eyes. Maybe! MAYBE!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: That was over five years ago. You check your memory with the cop who arrested Lopez. He's Ed Grady, now driving a patrol car, in the same neighborhood as the shoe shine place... 


GRADY: Lopez? Sure, I remember him, Pete. Picked him up myself. Had a record as long as your arm, the judge sent him up for five. 


PETER: And he had a squint to his eyes? 


GRADY: Yep. He sure did. Did I ever tell you of the flashlight gimmick he used to use? 


PETER: No. 


GRADY: He liked a small beam when he broke in to do a job, so he took an ordinary flashlight, stuffed the front end with paper, and curled it around till he got a thin beam of light. 


PETER: Ed! That's why he was using one of these new pen-type flashlights now! Tell me something else... 


GRADY: Yeah? 


PETER: When did Lopez get out of jail? 


GRADY: Seven weeks ago. 


PETER: Seven weeks ago. That's about when this wave of burglaries started. 


GRADY: Pete, are you trying to tell me that Lopez is... 


PETER: That's right, Ed. The Phantom!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: Just to make sure, you go back to your files at the paper, pick up Steve Lopez's picture at the morgue. Then you get back to Joe at the shoeshine and hat cleaning parlor.... 


PETER: Is this the man with the small hat, Joe? 


JOE: This is the man. 


(MUSIC: BRIDGE)


BURKEY: Nice work, Peter. Very nice work. So Steve Lopez is the phantom in the flesh, eh? 


PETER: That's right, Art. 


BURKEY: I'll send out a general alarm right away, and a pickup order. 


PETER: Art, wait a minute. I don't want to butt in with police procedure. But I've got a suggestion, if you'll listen. 


BURKEY: Go ahead. 


PETER: If you send out an alarm, Lopez will hear about it. That means, he'll hole up, deeper than ever. That make sense to you? 


BURKEY: Yes. 


PETER: All right. Suppose we keep our information close to our chest. Suppose we sort of let everything die. 


BURKEY: And then what?


PETER: If he figures the heat's off, and if he's still in San Antonio, the chances are he'll resume his regular habits again, go about his ordinary routine. So okay. I figure that sooner or later, the Phantom, alias Steve Lopez, is going to drop into Joe's for a shine. 


BURKEY: Then we'll keep our eyes on Joe's place. 


PETER: If you do, Lopez is sure to spot your men. I looked up his record, he's been around a long time, he probably knows every cop on the Force, but he doesn't know me, at least, face to face. Suppose I hang around Joe's, for a few days. If he comes in, then I can tip you off. 


BURKEY: I don't know. I don't like it. It's dangerous. 


PETER: Don't worry, I'm no hero. After I spot him, I'm turning him over to you. (A BEAT) How about it, Art? 


BURKEY: All right, Pete. If you want to be sucker-bait, go to it!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: You bring Joe in on the plan, and he's nervous about it, but agrees to cooperate. And so, you sit around and wait, read the paper, get your shoes shined, again and again. A day passes, two, three.....and each night, Joe says.... 


JOE: He is not coming in today, Mister Panfeld. Time to lock up!


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: The fourth day passes...then the fifth. You begin to regret the whole thing. When suddenly a face passes the plate glass window...a dark, swarthy face with a squint ...and then... 


(DOOR OPENS) 


LOPEZ: Hello, Joe...What'dya know? 


(DOOR CLOSES) 


JOE: (SUDDENLY NERVOUS) Oh. Hello, hello, Mister. 


LOPEZ: I need a shine. This guy ahead of me? 


JOE: Him? Oh, no, no. He's waiting for me to clean the hat..... 


LOPEZ: Is he? (A BEAT) Then why is he wearing his hat on his head?


PETER: I've got another hat he's cleaning. 


LOPEZ: Oh. I get it. Okay, Joe. Shine 'em up! 


JOE: (NERVOUS) Sure, Mister, sure. 


(WE HEAR FLAPPING OF SHOESHINE RAG) 


LOPEZ: What's the matter with you, pal?


JOE: Who, me? 


LOPEZ: Yeah. What are you so nervous about? 


JOE: Me? (A FALSETTO LAUGH) Me, I am not nervous, Mister. 


LOPEZ: You act like this is the first pair of shoes you ever shined. (A BEAT) And why are you lookin' at my face all the time, instead of my shoes? 


JOE: Me? I look at the shoes... 


LOPEZ: Never mind, pal. Just forget the whole thing. 


JOE: But you ask for the shine... 


LOPEZ: Yeah. But all of a sudden, I'm changin' my mind. All of a sudden I don't want any shine. Any objections? 


JOE: (SWEATING) No, Mister. No, sir! 


LOPEZ: All right. Get out of my way. I'm leavin'! 


NARR: You watch him, Peter Panfeld. You're sweating, so is Joe. You go out, follow him. He looks back once or twice, you duck. Then you see him go into a house on Clark Street. Out of the corner of your eye, you see the police prowl car, driven by Ed Grady, who's been covering you on orders of Art Burkey. You run over to the car... 


(MOTOR IDLING UNDER) 


PETER: (PANTING) Ed, call Number 61 on your radio. I've got Lopez spotted. 


(SWITCH TURNED OFF.) 


GRADY: (DRONES) Twenty-four calling sixty-one...sixty-one...


(MUSIC: UP AND UNDER)


NARR: In a few minutes, the homicide squad comes in, headed by Art Burkey. They surround the house. Then Art walks up to the door with a machine gun. You watch him, and you can't get over his nerve. Inside, there is a killer. 


(POUNDING ON DOOR...) 


BURKEY: (YELLS) All right, Lopez! Come on out! 


NARR: There's no answer. Art Burkey lowers the gun to the lock and... 


(TATTOO OF TOMMY GUN) 

(DOOR OPENS WITH A CRASH) 


BURKEY: All right, Lopez! Get away from that window! And don't move! 


LOPEZ: What is this? What's the idea? 


BURKEY: We just want you to try on a hat for size. All right, Pete, put it on him... 


(A PAUSE) 


PETER: Art, look. This time...it's a perfect fit! 


(MUSIC: CURTAIN) 


CHAPPELL: In just a moment we will read you a telegram from Peter Panfeld, of the San Antonio Texas Light with the final outcome of tonight's BIG STORY. 


(MUSIC: TURNTABLE)


GROUP: Guard against throat-scratch! Guard against throat-scratch! Guard against throat-scratch! Enjoy the smooth smooth smoking of fine tobaccos. Smoke a PELL MELL.


CHAPPELL: Yes, smoke PELL MELL - the cigarette whose mildness you can measure. 


HARRICE: Remember this - the further a puff of smoke is filtered through fine tobaccos, the milder it becomes. 


CHAPPELL: At the first puff PELL MELL smoke is filtered further than that of any other leading cigarette. Moreover, after 5 puffs, or 10, or 15, or 17 - by actual measure - PELL MELL'S greater length of traditionally fine tobaccos still travels the smoke further - filters the smoke and makes it mild. 


HARRICE: Thus, PELL MELL'S fine mellow tobaccos give you a smoothness, mildness and satisfaction no other cigarette offers you. 


CHAPPELL: Ask for the longer, finer cigarette in the distinguished red package. PELL MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES - "Outstanding!" 


HARRICE: And - they are mild!


(MUSIC: TAG)


CHAPPELL: Now we read you that telegram from Peter Panfeld of the San Antonio Light. 


PANFELD: Killer in tonight's Big Story had bloodstained clothes and murder weapon hidden in his room. He was found guilty of first degree murder in the Criminal District Court in San Antonio and later died in the electric chair. Many thanks for tonight's Pell Mell Award.


CHAPPELL: Thank you, Mr. Panfeld...the makers of PELL MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES are proud to present you the PELL MELL $500 Award for notable service in the field of journalism. 


HARRICE: Listen again next week, same time, same station, when PELL MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES will present another BIG STORY ... A Big Story from the front pages of the Sapulpa Oklahoma Herald, by-line Margaret Eakin. A BIG STORY that begins with the cry of a child in pain and ends with the cry of a man in death.


(MUSIC: STING)


CHAPPELL: And remember, every week you can see another different Big Story on television -- brought to you by the makers of PELL MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES.


(MUSIC: THEME WIPE AND FADE TO BG ON CUE)


CHAPPELL: THE BIG STORY is produced by Bernard J. Prockter with original music composed and conducted by Vladimir Selinsky. Tonight's program was adapted by Max Ehrlich from an actual story from the front pages of the San Antonio Texas Light. Your narrator was Bob Sloan, and George Petrie played the part of Peter Panfeld. In order to protect the names of people actually involved in tonight's authentic BIG STORY, the names of all characters in the dramatization were changed with the exception of the reporter, Mr. Panfeld. 


(MUSIC: THEME UP FULL AND FADE FOR) 


CHAPPELL: This program is heard by members of the Armed Forces overseas, through the facilities of the Armed Forces Radio Service. 


This is Ernest Chappell speaking for the makers of PELL MELL FAMOUS CIGARETTES. 


THIS IS NBC ... THE NATIONAL BROADCASTING COMPANY. 

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