Columbo (1971) s09e06 Episode Script

Murder in Malibu

- Will you marry me? - I'll try to decide quicker.
I hate you.
Tonight on Columbo This is the man she said she was going to marry.
He is? - Who are you? - I'm a detective.
- Like some? - Any time.
There can't be any connection between her deciding to marry and her being dead, could there? Good luck in Palm Springs.
You didn't kill her either, did you? Well, did you?! I know who did it.
We got it! Look at this.
Limousines, giggling women Ugh! My God.
All that excitement over nothing but a book.
- Nobody but a writer.
- Hey, my car's down the next alley.
After everything I've heard about her, I wanna see what she looks like in the flesh.
Why she's such a big deal to you.
Romance novels! Helen, would you wait a minute? Isn't it wonderful how photographers can touch people up? I mean, what is she really? 49? 50? So, she really is pretty.
Wouldn't you know? - Here.
I've got to get back to the office.
- Hey No, no, no.
Why don't you hang on to the ring? Might make you feel more comfortable in hotels.
- Don't you dare make fun of me! - Helen, it was beautiful.
Really.
I never had my taxes done so nicely.
A part-time computer shouldn't complain, right? Just peddle the insurance.
Not for long.
As soon as I become head of my own studio, I'll make you VP of Business Affairs.
- Oh, yeah, sure you will.
- You wanna bet? Do you wanna bet how soon? I don't bet with people who owe me money.
Look, good luck in Palm Springs.
Oh, damn you.
Here you go, sir.
I'll take those for you.
- I hope you enjoy the book.
- Excuse me.
Excuse me.
Oh! Look out! Wayne! Finally! I saw your car in the alley, but no one could tell me when I'd actually see you.
Welcome home, kid.
I did hope you'd change your mind and meet me at the airport.
With all those agents and PR people? No, thanks.
Even if I hadn't been tied up with my tax guy all morning.
Anyway, I thought Mavis would be there.
Wayne, darling, you don't have to explain.
If you'll just tell me where you were Monday night.
I called twice from Denver, once after supper and just before I went to bed.
Monday? I got a call from my agent and had to rush into town to read for a part in a movie.
Wayne, that's wonderful! Oh, but when would you be going to work? Because my book tour is over, except for a couple of appearances in LA.
- But if you're gonna - I haven't got the part yet.
Oh, that's good.
Then on Sunday let's fly to the islands.
To Maui.
Just the two of us.
No one will even know or care who we are.
Terrific.
No, wait, not Sunday.
If I reach the finals, I could still be in Palm Springs.
- Palm Springs? - Didn't I tell you? I'm in a celebrity tennis tournament.
Isn't that great? - Oh, no, you can't! - It's a terrific opportunity.
Rocca, the producer of that picture, will be there.
You don't have to act with everything else you can do.
Honey, it leads to better things.
Don't you realise I've been gone six weeks? Yes, but you're home now.
Come on.
You're worn out and you need a massage.
I got the pool all heated up for you.
- You can't just go off every time some - Look.
What do you think? The petunias.
I borrowed an extra gardener from Mrs Shannon to help get 'em in on time.
That is the colour you wanted, isn't it? And I put the bluebonnets in myself.
Matches the dress you were wearing when I first saw you.
They're the most beautiful petunias I've ever seen.
Mrs Shannon still seems to think I'm just your house-sitter.
I'm not surprised - the poor dear's as deaf as a post.
Relax your shoulders.
Wayne, what's really wrong? What haven't you told me yet? - Why run off the minute I come home? - I'm not.
I'll be back Tuesday at the latest.
Don't lie to me.
I told you I'd never tie a rope around you, but in the last six weeks did you meet someone? For God's sakes, it wasn't six weeks, it was six years! There wasn't a single day I didn't wish you'd gone with me.
You could've.
As what? Your bodyguard? Theresa will you marry me? Oh, please.
You promised you wouldn't say it again until the end of summer.
- Not until I've thought it out.
- So I'm a liar.
I can't help it.
I just think of the time we're wasting.
We could be diving for treasure in the Aegean.
- Or making a film of your latest book - Please, stop, stop! There are so many differences.
Not just age, but so many things to consider.
No, I won't stop.
And to hell with what anyone else says.
The only thing I can't stand is this living with you and living without you at the same time.
I'll try to decide quicker, Wayne.
I will.
Hello? Hey, I told you never to call me Yes, of course I'll be there.
I'm just leaving.
Well, did you ask her? My husband is so excited about the possibility of getting the rights to one of her books, like you suggested.
First things first.
That was just talk.
Right now I've got other things in mind.
So have I.
Only hurry up, will you? - Wayne? - That's all right.
No problem.
Wayne? - Who was it? - Just a wrong number.
Oh, couldn't you stay just another half-hour? I don't have to get dressed until Honey, in Tahiti we would never have to get dressed.
Mm I gotta run.
I'll call you.
Ms Goren, why haven't you ever been married? Yeah, that's a good question.
I just I was always too busy, I guess.
Um Well, my work really does interfere.
You think it's easy to write 24 books, to have three bestsellers at the same time? Do you know how long it takes just to read 24 books? Not to mention all those trips back and forth to the bank.
- Sir, have you read all of her books? - My hair stylist has.
You, the lady with the beads? Ms Goren, I've noticed that your heroines could be lots of us - or I hope so.
But where do you find models for these terrific guys who would rather look at you instead of themselves? Well, my mother used to drag us to old Errol Flynn movies, and I think I must've read lvanhoe You mean you just made up all those faithful, brave, unselfish heroes? - I mean, no models at all? - That's what a romance novel is, isn't it? What you wish life were like, instead of the way it really is.
Wait! Wait! Ms Goren, I don't believe you, because I was in that bookstore today, and right after you signed this, I saw you talking to this gorgeous hunk.
Whoo! And I noticed he had the longest lashes over those beautiful blue eyes.
Well, right here on page 87 it says: "He had long lashes and tangled hair the colour of chestnuts in autumn.
" "Beneath them, the eyes of her love, the blue of the sky.
" Ahh Was that the same man I saw you with in the Enquirer picture last month? Tell us, Theresa! Oh, all right.
Yes.
He's a friend of mine.
But what about those eyelashes? Hey, what's going on here? - They're for Ms Goren, sir.
- Sure they are.
Who put you up to this? - Oh, that's a secret.
- Speak of the devil, maybe? - Come on, tell us! - He must be madly in love with you.
Oh, why shouldn't I tell you? He just says that he misses me already, that's all.
Aww He always says the right thing, does the right thing.
"He, he, he" Who is "he"? Who is it? Who is it? His name is Wayne.
Wayne Jennings.
Uh-oh.
It's just me I'm laughing at, because why shouldn't I make up my mind? Why shouldn't everybody know? It's Wayne Jennings I love, and I've just decided I'm going to marry him as soon as I can.
Yes, Jess? Take your butt of the desk and get me Charlie Fisher.
- Hello? - Charlie? - Yeah, Jess - You were meant to be watching him.
- Of course I was watching - What's going on? What's he been up to? Look, I've barely had a chance to get my little book on the guy started - It's not a full rundown.
- I need something now that I can use.
I'm sure I'll have more on him later.
You'd better.
Don't mess with the details.
Just get me what I need.
- Get me what I need! - You're the boss.
I'll get it over to you.
Boy! - Hello? - Hello, Wayne.
Hi, it's you.
I tried to call you earlier.
I guess you were asleep.
Just a minute.
Let me get this phone untangled.
That's better.
I was a little late getting down here.
Hit a rock, had some tyre trouble.
And I missed your broadcast.
It wasn't on here anyway because of the tennis.
Then I got hung up with some guys at the club.
I didn't hear what you said about marrying me till 2am, from a bartender of all people! Everybody started buying champagne Honey, I love you.
I love you so much.
- Shut up, you bastard! - What? I'll never marry you! I'm not a fool! Have you been drinking? Have you been talking to your meddling sister again? - No! - I don't believe you.
Get some sleep.
I'm coming home tomorrow night and we'll talk about it.
No, don't.
I'm flying to Seattle tomorrow.
I despise you! You're a joke! I hate you! I hate you! Hello.
This is Helen speaking.
I'm not in right now, but if you leave your name, number and when to reach you, I'll get back to you as soon as I can.
Thanks for calling.
Helen, it's me, Wayne.
I just stopped in town for some gas.
I hope you can hear me - this crazy traffic on the freeway.
Listen, my plans are changed.
I'm on my way back to Theresa's place.
I'll call you when I get a chance, OK? What, you think I have time for breakfast? My watch says 7:15.
Is that right? Great.
Thanks, Mavis.
Well, I'll see you out at the house in about an hour and a half.
Oh, Mavis? Just don't tell Theresa I'm coming.
- Like some? - Any time.
Oh, what a nice way to start the day.
Columbo.
Columbo.
Schultz.
Don't know why they bothered you.
It's pretty routine.
Well, the captain sent me out.
He was a personal friend of Ms Goren's.
You better hold it, boys.
He probably wants a look.
- You moved the body? - Well, nobody told me you were coming.
Wonderful.
She was found in the study near her open safe.
No rigor mortis yet, but cooling probably happened at dawn.
She was shot once in the back and once in the head, probably a small calibre.
Both bullets still inside.
She was shot at close range.
There, you can see the skull fragmentation.
- You got a picture of her position? - Yeah, someplace.
- Any other marks on her body? - I didn't see any.
No other marks.
- Those men's socks? - No, Lieutenant, they're ladies'.
- They're called knee socks.
- Knee socks.
- Here's the picture.
- Oh, thank you very much.
- Uh, would you do me a favour, please? - Sure.
Would you get rid of these shells? Thank you very much.
OK, fellas, you can take it way.
Shoes, a robe, panties, bra and knee socks.
Very good.
Would you care to step inside now and look at the safe? - I would.
Thank you very much.
- Follow me.
This is it.
Real antique.
Not much security, but plenty fireproof.
Ms Goren used it mostly to keep her manuscripts in.
She also kept some jewellery in here - about $100,000 worth, according to her secretary, and it is gone.
Her secretary is here? Right.
She found the body when she came just before eight.
I see.
Did she notice anything else missing, or just the jewellery? - Well, only the gun so far.
- The gun? Ms Goren's.
Little pistol she kept in the drawer here.
- How do you know that? - Her secretary told us.
- We found it open, no gun.
- Oh.
Makes sense.
What about this drawer? Was this also open a little bit? Er, yeah.
You see, the way I see it, she got up early and she was getting dressed.
She started to turn on the TV.
Now, when we got here it was still on, but there was no sound.
I think maybe she heard something, she got a little frightened, she got the gun and she started to look around the house.
She went downstairs, into the study, found someone going through the safe.
Any guy with a little experience can open an old-timer like that.
Any guy? What guy? The thief.
He obviously got the gun away from her and, er - What the hell are you looking at? - Oh, it's nothing.
Panties.
Turns out my wife wears the same brand as Ms Goren.
So it was a robbery that went bad.
OK What about prints on the safe? Just Ms Goren's, and they're smeared.
Same on the dial.
Whoever opened the safe last must've been wearing gloves.
Like I told you, professional thief.
The secretary's name is Mavis.
But she's still a little upset.
Come on.
You know, Schultz, I gotta say you have this thing very well organised.
Thank you.
- Oh, look at that.
- What? Now, that's interesting.
It's where he got in, that's all.
There's no prints there either.
No, no, I mean that a professional could open the safe that cleanly and have to break glass to open a French door.
It's the quickest way.
Maybe he forced her to open the safe.
What's the difference? But my nephew could open this with a boy-scout knife.
Will you please come on outside? I got some guys looking for footprints.
Excuse me, ma'am.
I know how badly you must feel.
I wanna say I know what a fine woman Ms Goren was.
My wife read every one of her books.
- How long were you with her? - Many years.
Well, maybe you can help me.
You must've known her habits.
I noticed she was wearing white socks - I thought they were men's socks.
They were knee socks.
They were her dressy ones.
I see.
Well, they caught me off-guard.
I didn't expect that, and I was wondering, did she often wear? No.
No, of course not.
They're more comfortable with slacks.
Ah, with slacks.
Now I understand.
One more thing.
Is there an ashtray? I'd like to get rid of these eggshells.
- Yes, of course.
- Oh, my God! Um just a minute.
Wayne! I'm so sorry! Honey, I'm so sorry! I'm so sorry.
I just feel awful for you.
This must be It's OK, Mavis.
Shh I'm all right.
Really.
Honey, you just take it easy.
I'll be just fine.
Ms Thompson, I brought your coffee.
You go ahead.
I'll be all right.
I guess you're Ms Goren's tennis instructor? - Who are you? - Oh, no.
Didn't you see Ms Goren on television last night? This is Wayne.
Wayne Jennings.
The man she said she was going to marry.
He is? Oh No, there isn't gonna be a wedding.
Look, honey, can I call you back? I don't want to explain! I just got in.
Something's happened.
If I tell you what, you'll just print it wrong, damn you.
And I don't know yet myself! Call back later.
Oh, Captain, I'm sorry.
I didn't know it was you.
Yes, I got your dreadful message.
No, no, I do thank you and I know you'll do everything you can to help.
Yes.
I'm on my way now.
The garage is bringing your car up.
Micki, just say I didn't get in yet, you don't know anything and stop bawling.
All right.
Jess McCurdy Agency? Oh, are you finding lots of fingerprints? Oh How do you do, sir? Fingerprints? No, sir, nothing.
But if a guy came in here, a professional thief, and had to pass all these beautiful things, isn't it strange that he wouldn't pick one up and put it in his pocket? - Yeah, it is strange.
- It is strange, isn't it, sir? Oh, Mr Jennings, I hope you'll forgive me for assuming you were a tennis instructor.
- I just didn't know.
- That's quite all right.
What are you? A professional player? There are other things in life besides tennis! It's only a game.
Actually, I was in Palm Springs playing a celebrity tournament.
Ah Oh, celebrity tournament? I see.
I understand, sir.
Uh, I was wondering, is there an ashtray? I'd like to get rid of these eggshells.
There's an ashtray right on the table.
- What's the matter, sir? - It's gone.
God You may be right about that guy.
The killer? There was a green Buddha with gold filigree - It sat right here.
You can't miss it.
- Green? - Yes, jade.
It was a gift from one of Theresa's fans, some maharani.
- Well, I don't know anything about jade.
- Neither do I, but a thief might.
And I do know it was insured for $25,000.
$25,000?! - You hear that? You better start looking.
- I'll check the other rooms.
Mr Jennings, I can see that you can be a big help here, and we do have to know anything that might be missing.
Now, I noticed there's a room upstairs with all men's clothing in it That's my room.
- Oh, you live here? - Yes.
Does that shock you? No, sir.
No.
Could we look around? If you'd like to snoop, please.
Be my guest.
Boy.
She sure fixed this up nice for you.
Not an easy job, considering all the junk I dragged in.
You mean you caught this thing? Cabo San Lucas.
Over 100 pounds on a ten-pound test line.
You don't say.
Wow And that's you on a mountain, too? The one on the left's my Sherpa.
I'm the one on top.
- And sky-diving? That's you? - Yes.
And on the yacht.
I was crewing a race in New Zealand.
Wow.
I mean, for a man as young as you to have managed to do all these things and still find time to well, earn a living and all I thought you just wanted to know if anything was missing in here.
- Who is this lady? - It's Jess McCurdy.
- McCurdy? Oh, that's her agent.
- Her sister.
- Oh, Jess, I am so terribly sorry - Cut the crap.
I've been told what happened.
Why aren't you in Palm Springs? I got a call late last night, someone telling me what Theresa'd said on TV, and I just wanted to come back here and surprise her.
- Surprise her? - To be with her.
To hell with tennis.
Jess, I was the happiest guy in the world.
Ask Mavis - I called her at 7:15 this morning on my way through LA.
I told her not to tell Theresa.
I just wanted it to be a surprise.
God, if only I hadn't stopped in town for breakfast or to pick up all these flowers.
Look.
See for yourself.
I stopped at a nursery.
I bought every flower in the place.
Wayne, didn't you know that Theresa was going to Seattle for another book party? No.
Not until I talked to Mavis this morning on the phone.
She said Theresa was going up this afternoon, so I figured I'd fly up with her.
I even had this all ready.
It was my grandmother's wedding ring.
You know, I got sort of a classic car too.
Not like this one, though.
This is a real beauty.
I notice you got two new tyres.
Imports.
Brand-new imports.
I sure could use one of those.
A pair, Lieutenant.
You should always buy tyres in pairs.
I bought those last night.
I had a blow-out on the way down to the Springs.
Oh Say, you don't mind if I just feel the wheel? Is that all right? Sure.
You know, I never never actually sat in one of these before.
Aw, Mr Jennings, this is sure some car.
How long would it take, say from Palm Springs, in a road-burner like this? - That depends on traffic.
- Oh, the traffic, right.
Right And that's all you found by the safe? Her draft pages from the last manuscript? That's all there was, the secretary thinks - except for the jewellery.
You didn't happen to notice a little black book? You know, the type that a writer might keep notes in? It could've been anywhere in the house - the bedroom, somewhere else I'm afraid not.
We've gone through the whole house.
- A little black book? Is it important? - No, no.
I was just wondering - Who are you? - I'm a detective.
That's Lieutenant Columbo.
He's in charge of the case.
You don't say? If my sister was killed by some lunatic thief, why aren't you out looking for him? Oh, I'm on my way right now.
And don't you worry, because if I don't find your sister's killer quick, my wife might never let me back in my house again.
So I'll just, er, get out of your way now.
Oh, but Mr Jennings? You've already been such a help.
I wonder if you wouldn't mind showing me around the neighbourhood a bit, too? Well, go on, do it! What's his name? Oh, you poor boy! Mrs Shannon, the lieutenant wants to know if you've seen any strangers down here lately.
Specifically this morning - was there anyone around? Only it doesn't have to be a stranger.
Maybe there was a car you heard? - What? - Or saw, I mean.
Well, I don't get up early.
I'm no jogger.
Oh, Wayne! How can you stand it? Maybe around dawn? Or a little earlier, maybe? Mr Jennings says you and your husband go running sometimes.
Oh, yeah, we do several miles every day.
Mostly down at the beach, but Oh, on the way down there and back? This morning? Er - Nobody, I guess.
- Or a car? Maybe a car? Oh No No, I'm positive, Lieutenant, there was nothing.
But you said you were an early-morning riser, just like Ms Goren was.
Well, the trouble is this morning I overslept.
Father didn't waken me, the way he usually does.
Isn't that right, Father? Why should I? Damned snow kept up for over half an hour.
- Snow? Here? - On the TV! She missed her yoga, I missed the early news We're on cable.
They always seem to work on it first thing in the morning.
So maybe some men from the cable company were working in this area? Maybe, hell! We're always having trouble.
Now, that's enough about trouble, Father.
Wayne, I'm sure the lieutenant wouldn't mind waiting while I fixed a cup of tea.
- You are welcome - No, no, but that's all right for him.
Thank you, ma'am.
Excuse me.
I really can't stay either.
Maybe some other time? OK.
Oh, we got out there a little before dawn.
There's a cable terminal on that road which fans out to all those houses.
- That's where the trouble was.
- Did you see any other cars? No, I don't think so.
Least, I didn't notice any headlights, even after it lightened up.
No, I'm sure I didn't.
Not even cars that seemed to belong in this neighbourhood? - Not this morning.
- What about people, then? Well, some days you see a man and a woman in sweats headed for the beach.
But it's a quiet area.
It's the ones that are different that you notice.
Like yesterday I saw a man wandering around with field glasses.
But that was much later.
I figured he was bird-watching.
- Nobody like that this morning.
- Bird-watching? On private property? Look.
Here's our work log.
The times are on it.
- We were parked here about 40 minutes.
- This could be a big help.
But I was at the controls.
It was my partner who was up in the basket.
Well, I'll be back to see him.
Now I'm gonna go watch a little TV.
But where do you find models for these terrific guys, who would rather look at you instead of themselves? Well, my mother used to drag us to old Errol Flynn movies, and I think I must've read lvanhoe You mean you just made up all those faithful, brave, unselfish heroes? I mean, no models at all? He's a friend of mine.
- But what about those eyelashes? - Lieutenant.
Yeah? When my secretary said you wanted to see this, I was quite agreeable.
Now she tells me you keep re-running it, over and over.
- She's so pretty.
- I was always too busy, I guess.
Would you mind turning down the sound? Oh, sure.
Er What button is it? Now, what I said was that your baby sister, she's so beautiful.
Theresa was only two years younger than I, Lieutenant.
Oh, look, I didn't mean No.
You know, I had this younger brother, a year and seven months younger than me, but I called him baby, so did everybody else, so I just said that automatically.
Never mind.
But you're right, of course.
She never had a facelift, either.
Facelift? Her? No No, she's a natural beauty.
And she's so sweet to everybody.
Even when they ask her dumb questions, look how sweet she is.
I thought you were out looking for her killer.
Oh, I am.
There's just some things I wanna learn about her first.
Like what? Like she never quite ever grew up? Never stopped talking to strangers? Was always the fairy princess in the family? Except that hasn't bothered me since high school, when she got all the dates and won all the English prizes, because I discovered I knew how to make money.
For everybody.
And she discovered just how much she needed me.
Excuse me, ma'am.
It's just this part here.
His name is Wayne.
Wayne Jennings.
It's her and him that I'm curious about, because I've been noticing, this Mr Jennings, he sure knows how to get along with women.
- Oh, please.
- All except you, that is.
Would you want your sister to marry someone that much younger, without a real job, without a future, with no money? Wayne has nothing.
You know, I was wondering about that.
Money.
I mean, she must've had quite a bit of it.
But now he's not gonna get any.
- Unless there's maybe some insurance.
- Insurance? Well, people who travel a lot, they always seem to have a lot of extra policies.
As far as I know, I'm her sole beneficiary.
That's what I mean.
So there can't be any connection between her deciding to get married and her being dead.
Could there? It's Wayne Jennings I love and I've just decided I'm going to marry him Are you telling me there's a possibility it wasn't a thief who killed my sister? Oh, no, ma'am, I'm not suggesting anything yet.
I haven't even seen a preliminary lab report.
No, I just Would you like to know why I didn't approve of Wayne? Why I thought he was so terribly, terribly wrong for my sister? Would you like to hear what I know about him? Make yourself comfortable - it'll take a long time to go through each of Honey, don't bother me now.
Oh.
It's for you.
That other lieutenant.
Er, Schultz, don't bother me now.
All right, so you found a bird-watcher.
So what if he won't talk? Well, tell me about it later.
Just hold everything! Wait for me.
I think I'll talk about it later.
I have to get back out to the house.
Excuse me.
What's your full name? Where do you live? Why don't you have any ID? What were you doing out there? Oh, you got here.
- Is this the bird guy? - Yeah, but he's no warbler.
Neighbour saw him standing by his car, looking over here with his field glasses.
Accused him of trespassing.
He just laughed.
- He's a clam.
He knows all his rights.
- Oh, he's one of those.
Yeah.
And listen.
Palm Springs called.
They located that tyre place for you.
The man is there now.
He confirmed the sale of the tyres.
Oh, that's terrific.
Can you get him back on the line? Which first? Want me to take him apart or call the guy? No, let's do it all together.
McCurdy's in the living room, we take him in, have that call switched to the living room And where's Mr Jennings? I want him too.
I want everybody.
I hope you know what you're doing.
Excuse me.
Lt Columbo wants you downstairs.
What's he want? Is it something new? Uh-huh Uh-huh He was not registered? Uh-huh.
Yeah.
Well, that's good, Sergeant.
No, that's good work.
Yes, I think I have it all, but just let me make sure.
Mr Jennings, your car licence plate is WEJ 1221, isn't it? - That's right.
- Yeah, that's it, Sergeant.
Thanks again.
- What's the matter? Am I getting a ticket? - Oh, no, no, nothing like that.
No, I just thought you'd like to know the Palm Springs police located the garage where you bought those tyres and they confirmed what you said.
Well, of course.
Why wouldn't they? Oh, no reason.
In a murder case we have to double-check everything, that's all.
Um Oh Well, there is one small thing here that I don't understand, though.
Your mileage.
The guy said that the garage wrote it down you know, for the tyre guarantee slip.
Did I subtract that right? - What the devil are you talking about? - Oh, I'm just figuring it, that's all.
I think you said that you got a call late last night and that made you pile into the car and drive up here from Palm Springs, and then you said you stopped in town, you had breakfast Yes, that's right.
I told you, Wayne called me from a very noisy restaurant in Los Angeles at exactly 7:15.
- Sit down, Mavis.
- Well, he did.
Sit down.
Yes, but it's 110 miles from Palm Springs to Los Angeles, plus it's another 20 here.
That's 130.
Only when I looked in your car this morning, I just happened to notice your mileage speedometer, and when I subtract the garage mileage from mine, it's 170.
That's 40 miles too much.
Well, of course.
Palm Springs is all spread out - Indian Wells, Palm Desert After I bought the tyres I went looking for some of the tennis gang, we went a couple of places for drinks, then back to the club.
- 40 miles is nothing down there.
- Oh, I know.
And we'll check on that.
Because there's one other thing the guy said The hotel and tennis club where the players stay, they don't have your name on the registry, so So what? What concern is it of yours where I stayed, went for drinks, or anything else in Palm Springs? - I think I know where he probably stayed.
- Jess, stay out of this.
Why? You've been trying to get a part in Paul Rocca's new picture, haven't you? What are you worried about? There.
Every agent has everyone's number.
- Thank you.
- No problem.
- Jess, why do you have to do this? - Why not? Don't you realise I'm just as unhappy as you? It's not my fault Theresa died.
You're not gonna call that number, are you? It's none of your damn business! - I don't think the captain's gonna like this.
- When a snowball starts to roll, push.
Hello? Hello.
I'd like to speak to Mr Paul Rocca, please.
I'm sorry, Mr Rocca is in New York for a few days.
Well, it was a Mr Wayne Jennings that I'm calling about.
I understand that Mr Jennings was staying at Mr Rocca's house? Who? Mr Jennings? Oh, that tennis player, Wayne Jennings.
Well, I suppose my husband might've told him someone could use our guest house.
He wouldn't be there now, though.
I'm sure the tennis matches have started already.
Oh, he would've left much earlier than that.
As I understand it, he got a phone call some time after midnight last night? How on earth would I know? Who is this, anyway? Oh, didn't I say? Er, Lieutenant Columbo, Los Angeles police.
I wanted to ask you if you know what time that phone call came in? It might've been just before he left Palm Springs, if you know when that was.
Well, I, um I didn't know he did leave Um, look here, what's happened? Mr Jennings is OK, isn't he? Oh, he's fine - I think.
Hold on, ma'am.
Someone else will explain.
- Why don't you tell him the truth? - I have.
No, you've been lying.
Just tell him the truth! - Why don't you get him to tell the truth?! - How do you know he's lying? - That phone call was a little after 3am! - What are you talking about? And it wasn't from a friend of Theresa's who told him what she said on TV.
- It was from Theresa herself! - That's ridiculous! Telling you to get lost! Telling you she would never, never marry you! - She's making it up! - That she never wanted to see you again! Telling you that she realised what a damn fool she'd been! How do you know these things, ma'am? For God's sake, because I was here when she made the phone call! Now just get him to tell the truth! I'm not gonna say another word as long as you're around! Get her out of here! - You're a liar! You're a liar! - All right, calm down.
Calm down.
Now, Ms McCurdy this gentleman here is obviously a private investigator.
Does he work for you, maybe? I hired him a few days ago.
Charlie, tell him everything you know.
Yeah.
Glad to get off the hook.
Not much on Mr Jennings' background yet, but there is something about the car might interest you.
And a newspaper delivery guy you might wanna pick up.
See, I paid him a few bucks to keep an eye out and I got a call from him.
Says he saw that red Jag of Mr Jennings' this morning, around seven.
- What? Where? - Down the highway a mile or two.
Said it passed him like he was standing still, on its way south, heading back into town from here.
You got him? Jess, I couldn't help it! I don't even know how it happened, except when I went into her bedroom there was a gun and there was a black notebook filled with lies about me! And I went down to the study and I found her there on the floor, near the open safe.
I don't know what happened.
I just couldn't control myself! I must've Oh, God, I didn't know what I was doing! Oh, my God I never saw a guy unwind that fast.
- Miranda? - I guess you'd better.
All right, you have the right to remain silent.
- You have If you give up the right - Lieutenant? Lieutenant? Don't interrupt! Just came in.
Message from Ballistics there, too.
Schultz.
Schultz, stop.
Schultz.
The preliminary autopsy says Ms Goren was shot twice, once through the heart with her own gun, that little.
25 that's the gun Mr Jennings just said he fired But that wasn't what killed her.
What killed her was a shot in the head, and that, says Ballistics, was from a different gun, a.
22 calibre.
And it was fired quite a bit earlier.
Over a half-hour earlier, in fact.
"The conclusion of the preliminary autopsy report is as follows:" Whoever shot Ms Goren in the heart later with her own.
25 calibre just "just shot a dead body.
" - What happened? - He fainted.
Uh, Ms McCurdy? Please can you wait a minute, ma'am? - Please, no.
- Er, ma'am Lieutenant that man who said I could go is your superior, isn't he? Oh, yes.
The real experts have to take statements in an unusual case like this.
But there is one more question I wanted to ask.
Of course.
Why I didn't tell you about Theresa's phone call? Well, how could I? At least until I had a chance to talk to Wayne.
I mean, who would believe he was capable of killing her? No matter how greedy or ambitious or unfaithful a man is.
Besides, everyone was saying it was a robbery.
Oh, God.
What are they doing now? Oh, taking him downtown, I guess.
A lot of reporters are starting to show up.
- Downtown? - Oh, not to arrest him, ma'am.
There's no law against shooting a dead body.
No, it's all right, fellas.
I'll be OK.
I'll make it.
Er, ma'am? You didn't answer the question I was gonna ask.
You realise, don't you, that now I'm gonna have to start all over from the beginning? - Well? - What time did you leave here last night? I was out late last night.
I drove by here a little after midnight.
The lights were on.
I found Theresa had been drinking and crying and making up her mind to get rid of him - I'd sent her Charlie's little black book.
I shouldn't have - she took it far too seriously.
Anyway, after she insisted on making that phone call, I got her to bed somehow, and I left here to go home at about 3am.
All right, Lieutenant? When you see a snowball starting to roll push.
Coming through.
Lieutenant? Sorry to keep you waiting.
I'm right in the middle of a shotgun job.
OK, Doc, I won't bother you long.
It's her I wanna talk to you about, Ms Goren.
Damn shame - beautiful woman.
My wife read all her books.
You better nail somebody soon.
I wanna make sure of the time of death.
Could it have been as early as 3:30? Didn't you get the preliminary? The shot to the head that killed her, I said at 5:30am at the earliest.
What about the other shot, through her heart? Any chance of error? I mean about its happening so much later? Absolutely not.
It's too bad the assistant ME didn't notice the internal bleeding in the heart wound.
I'm surprised you didn't notice it yourself.
Well, actually, Doc Anyhow, she was dead at least a half an hour before the second shot.
Look, I've gotta finish up on this guy who tried to put both barrels in his mouth.
There's something else.
The way Ms Goren was found, in her underwear and all - Early riser, somebody said.
- But like you say, she sure was pretty.
Dressed that way, could somebody have maybe roughed her up? Sexually molested? No.
No, of course not.
Er, not a sign of contusions, no blows, no roughing up at all.
Here, come on in.
We'll talk about it while I finish up.
Thanks, Doc.
That'll be all for now.
Oh, I'm sorry.
Oh, honey, I'm so sorry.
Micki, I thought I told you to go home half an hour ago.
I know.
But I decided I won't, not until you do.
Oh, for God's sake.
Oh, Jess.
It's almost 7:30.
The cleaning men are already here.
So, why don't you let me drive you home myself, and I'll have the car sent to your house first thing.
Don't be silly.
I'm perfectly all right.
It just seems like watching this over and over again will only make you feel worse.
And besides, you haven't even had any dinner yet.
It just occurred to me, maybe somebody followed her home after the show.
- What? - No Oh, I I doubt that.
But I suppose it is sort of a relief to know that it wasn't him who who killed her.
I am so glad you told me that.
Uh It is, isn't it? A relief, I mean? Just make sure you turn this thing off before you leave.
Paging Dr Clay.
You're needed in the reception area.
Dr Clay, please report to the reception area.
Dr Wilson, pick up the courtesy phone.
Whoa, whoa.
That's good.
Thank you.
- Sorry, sir, no visitors allowed.
- It's OK.
He's a policeman.
Oh.
Well, maybe you'd like to leave that for Mr Jennings.
Oh, no, no.
I just dropped by.
- Dear, pour him a glass, then run along.
- Thank you, sir, but I just had a root beer.
OK.
Go on, scoot.
Boy, this is sure different from my hernia operation.
It's my lawyer's idea, putting me in here overnight to dodge those reporters.
- She fixed it with the doctors.
- Oh, I bet they're worried too.
Because, I tell ya, I sure was shocked when you collapsed like that.
I mean, any guy that climbs mountains and sky-dives I never came that close to passing out before in my life.
But don't you realise the shocks I'd had? Theresa knew I wasn't perfect.
She knew I played around with a few other women but she even kidded me about it.
Yes - you know, I've noticed, women, they just seem to take to you.
But it didn't mean anything.
For Theresa to turn on me like that, to read a few filthy things in that notebook and then to suddenly throw me over? She threatened to write a book about me, to make a best-selling joke of my life! I tell you, I went into her bedroom and there was that notebook and there was the gun I grabbed it out of the drawer.
You know, we thought that she just took it downstairs because she heard something.
Oh, how I wish she had.
She might still be alive.
Don't you understand? I took it.
Then when I found her in the study next to the open safe, there were pieces of my love letters all over the floor, and something inside me It's all in my confession.
Can't you just read it? In your confession here, you said you didn't remember if you fired one shot or two I didn't know what I was doing! Can't you figure it out? We'll certainly try our best.
Incidentally, we didn't find any pieces of love letters on the floor.
Of course you didn't.
I burned 'em.
There were still some coals in the fireplace.
I just burned 'em up, got the hell out of there.
If I can just ask you one thing about Charlie's notebook and I don't want you to go into it, sir, it's too upsetting.
I know what's in it, Charlie told me already.
But you didn't say what you did with Charlie's notebook.
Lieutenant, I already asked Helen to call your office about that.
- Helen? - She does my taxes.
She's the woman I left a message for on my way up from Palm Springs.
Anyway, what I what I did with that damn notebook, I I threw it in a dumpster on my way in to breakfast.
Which is just as dumb as everything else I did after Calling Mavis from that restaurant, buying all those flowers Sir, why don't you get some sleep now, and, uh I just wanna say that I'll have a car come around at ten tomorrow morning.
Why? I thought your captain said I was free to go.
Oh, of course.
But I guess you realise that now you're the one person I can count on most to help find the real killer.
And we will, don't you worry.
And Mr Jennings, he did leave a message? Yes.
He called on his way through town at 6:25 this morning.
- How do you know that? - The machine.
- It even records the time of hang-ups.
- Oh, I see, yeah.
Shh.
His call is next.
Helen, it's me, Wayne.
I just stopped in town for some gas.
I hope you can hear me - this crazy traffic on the freeway.
Listen, my plans are changed.
I'm on my way back to Theresa's place.
I'll call you when I get a chance, OK? Did you hear how fast he was talking? How upset he sounded? I could tell the minute I played that back that that woman was putting him through some kind of wringer.
- Wringer? - Wayne is usually so easy-going.
I always knew when she was driving him up the wall with her emotional outbursts, her "change of life" moods, her insatiable Shut up, Helen.
I guess you kinda like him yourself.
Well, I'm a realist, that's all.
I take what I can get.
- There, 6:25am.
- Oh, I better write that down.
- No, here, you can have the whole tape.
- Oh, thank you.
You don't happen to know what he meant when he said he'd call you back later? - No.
Why? - Oh, it's probably not important.
There's one other thing.
I see on your door that you sell insurance.
Now, we've already checked Ms Goren's insurance agents, and they say that the only beneficiary to her life policies is her sister, Ms McCurdy.
- All but one.
- Oh? When Wayne was first trying to impress her, he got me to write out an all-risks life policy for him.
When Ms Goren heard about it, she sent a note saying she wanted the same thing.
She didn't want to bother her people about it.
Wayne had insisted that she be his beneficiary, so, naturally the great lady must reciprocate the grand gesture.
Would you mind telling me how much those policies are for? Look, Wayne's already told me he's not getting any money.
Anything coming to him goes directly to Theresa's charities.
All right.
But, if you must know, the policy's fairly impressive.
$1 million.
$1 million? Oh That's fairly impressive.
Lieutenant, I sent your driver home, drove my own car here.
Is that all right? Oh, sure.
You're free to do whatever you want.
You're gonna be happy to know we just found the other bullet.
It was buried in those ashes.
- Other bullet? - From Ms Goren's gun.
That second shot that you couldn't remember whether you fired or not? And it all makes a lot of sense.
You said you came in from over there, and from across the room you saw her kneeling, leaning against the open safe.
You had no idea she'd already been shot.
You saw the love letters all ripped up on the floor, you assumed she just took 'em out and, in a blind rage, you fired.
And if one of those bullets just missed by a little, it would've ricocheted off these stones right into the fireplace.
And that's supposed to make me happy? It explains a little more about what happened, that's all.
Great.
Speaking of bullets, that earlier shot that the real killer fired into her head, well, Ballistics say that was from a .
22 calibre, and that's a very popular gun.
- You don't say.
- Well, I only mention it, sir, because I noticed in your room there was a gun collection, and I was wondering if maybe, when you said that nothing was missing No, Lieutenant, I do not own one.
The killer must've brought his own.
Can we get out of this room? It gives me the chills.
Oh, I'm sorry.
Yeah, we can wait in the other room.
For what? That cherry-picker parked down the road, maybe? Oh, are they here already? Oh, let's go.
They could be our best witnesses.
Witnesses? To what? OK, hit it, Rod.
Don't worry about a thing.
It can carry you all.
Tell 'em, McGee.
It may be a little crowded, but if you wanna see what I saw Right.
And I need him to help tell me what I'm lookin' at.
- You better put this on, Lieutenant.
- No, no thanks.
Never use 'em.
- You'll be sorry.
- Hey, I'll take it.
All right, Rod, bring it down.
Looks shaky, doesn't it? Don't worry about a thing.
- It'll be all right.
- Here we go, Lieutenant.
Pile in.
See, these guys say they didn't notice a single other car on the road all the time that they were up there yesterday.
All aboard.
That's where you were parked? The whole time? What, the truck? Yeah.
Whole time.
Watch the branches.
And that was from, uh That's about the same time I stopped in LA and called Helen.
- Just a little before 6:30.
- 6:30, that's right.
Now, for the 40 minutes before that, sir, where were you guys? We were up there, right next to this pole, working on that terminal there.
But I went back and forth a couple of times to that other pole.
To that pole right over there.
You see where the lines fan out? See there? That's Ms Goren's lines.
You can see her whole driveway from up here.
Even part of the garage.
- Can you? - And over there's Mrs Shannon's place.
And the one farther down, that's where that lady lives with her father.
But you notice, Lieutenant, you can see the whole road from here.
Now you understand why we're so sure there weren't any cars.
And the view's a whole lot better from over here.
See? I worked on that wire yesterday.
Oh, gee - What the hell is that? - Crows.
They're nesting up here.
They were really after me yesterday.
Milo! At least now we know the murderer didn't come or go by car, right? Not while we were here.
But look around - you see all this shrubbery? You can see for yourself, anybody could've been sneaking around on foot, we wouldn't have noticed them.
Uh, not on foot, I guess you wouldn't.
Sir, you don't happen to know where her sister lives, Ms McCurdy? A couple of miles down the beach.
You looking for something, Lieutenant? What? Oh.
How are you? It's all right.
Let him in, Rosa.
- Boy, this sure is some place you got.
- Well, thank you.
Is that all you came to tell me? Well, no.
Oh, but there have been no new developments, if that's what you meant.
All right.
Care for a drink? Wanna sit down? Oh, thank you, but I better not - I got sand all over my clothes.
- Make yourself comfortable.
- Oh, thank you, ma'am.
I know what I wanted to ask you.
You said you were with your sister the night before she died.
What time did you say you left? 3am? Yes, that's what I said.
I ask because she went to bed so late, and by dawn she was already half-dressed.
- Would she get up that early? - Yes.
Theresa always got up early.
Besides, she was expecting to go to Seattle, remember? She had a lot to attend to.
- You arranged that, didn't you? - What? The book signing? I just assumed you did.
I mean, considering how you must've felt when you saw her saying all those things on TV about marrying this man and being in love with him Look, I wanted to get her as far away from him as fast as possible.
Wouldn't you? I guess I would, ma'am, if she was my little sister.
She was a born innocent, Lieutenant.
She was always getting too serious about the wrong men.
Oh, I know he's attractive, but she didn't know how to handle a man like that.
She didn't know how to use him and dump him.
Well, she did seem like such a trusting, soft-mannered lady.
Except maybe when she read Mr Jennings the riot act on the phone.
What the hell are you really doing here? To ask permission to check with the telephone company.
- About your long-distance calls, that is.
- My what? From here? Well, I'm sure it's just a mistake - you know how those computers are but so far there doesn't seem to be any record of that call to Palm Springs.
Not from your sister's house, at least.
So I got to wondering Because I notice, Ms McCurdy, you're a little like myself.
My wife, when she gets all steamed up, I don't say much until I know that it's safe to say it.
And I noticed in Mr Jennings' confession that all those awful words he said your sister used, they just didn't sound like her.
So what I got to wondering was Well, I had this other brother in high school.
He was older than me and he used to get all these calls from all these girls, and I discovered when I answered the phone that if I grooved a little and grumbled, sounded like him, then wow, the offers he used to get and the things these girls used to say to him.
Boy, it was like an education.
But it was easy to fool 'em.
All right.
All right! You made your damn point! - I'm sorry.
- Like hell you are.
You're not sorry.
You don't have to check the records.
Yes, I'm the one that made the phone call early this morning.
Oh, honey, I love you.
I love you so much.
- Shut up, you bastard! - What? I'll never marry you.
I'm not a fool! Theresa, have you been drinking? Have you been talking to your meddling sister? - No! - I don't believe you.
Get some sleep.
I'm coming home tomorrow night and we'll talk.
Don't you ever come back! I hate you! I hate you! But you don't understand.
You see, I pleaded with her.
I'd begged her, I'd argued with her.
I'd done everything.
But she just wouldn't I even got us both half-drunk.
But she wouldn't do it.
She said she agreed she couldn't marry him, she'd go to Seattle, do anything else, but she couldn't do that, she just wouldn't tell him.
She couldn't end it.
I got so mad.
I got so mad.
I put her to bed and I went home, and I was so mad I picked up the phone My God I shouldn't have been drinking.
- Ms McCurdy? - Oh, God, Rosa, get out of here! Yes, ma'am, but I just wanted to say there's a telephone call for Lt Columbo.
All right, all right.
He'll take it in here.
All right, go on.
Shh! Quieto.
No digas que estoy aquĆ­.
I have a surprise for you.
Come on, I'll tell you.
All right, Schultz, but if you could scare me up a ride Oh, you have? I'll be right out.
They found a gun.
I'll have to leave.
Uh, look, I I think I know how painful that was Please, Lieutenant! Please! Just go.
God, you look awful.
How did you get in here? How long have you been here? Rosa! I sent her to run an errand.
Oh, there's no need for her to know about that bitchy little phone call of yours.
Yours.
God, why didn't I guess? Get out of here.
- I said get out.
- No.
I'm not gonna leave.
And that phoney phone call of yours isn't gonna leave, either.
All your life you'll think it was your fault Theresa died, because you made me do what I did.
Just get out of here.
Go on, get out.
But I didn't kill her.
You just made me think that I did.
Stop it.
Let go of me! Not until you listen to me, Jess! Because you didn't kill her either, did you? Well, did you?! Of course not! What a stupid thing to say! Look at me, Jess.
Don't you see? I know the agony of what you're feeling.
We're both riddled with guilt, and we both just did horrible things only because we loved her.
For the last time get your hands off of me.
We deserve each other, Jess.
Maybe we need each other now, to keep from hating ourselves forever.
Wayne Jennings, I hated myself from the very moment I made the mistake of letting you meet my sister.
- You introduced me.
- It was a mistake.
- I asked you to do it.
- It was a mistake! Have you ever thought about why you're so angry, Jess? Why you're so sorry you introduced us? You lousy bastard! Jessica, I've seen how you've watched me.
Every time I was with her, you watched me.
And you've seen how I've watched you.
How I've wanted you.
I hate you.
It was buried in a lot of other junk over there.
- Metal detector picked it up.
So did a dog.
- Dog? Right.
The gun had been fired lately - you could still smell it.
And it was a.
22.
One of the traffic boys is running it down to the lab.
That path there, that leads up to Ms Goren's house? That's right.
You take it from Goren's place to get up and down the beach.
And the sister, that's her house, that fifth house up there.
Right.
So, we already know that the killer came and went on foot.
Now, if that turns out to be the murder weapon I think I'll wait in the morgue.
What are you looking for? I don't know.
It's just something I noticed before.
Er You see that little speck there? Yeah, sure.
So what? Photographer should keep his lens clean.
I don't think that's what it is.
Hey, wanna see something really interesting? This is an organ from a poison case.
Notice the purply-grey area I just thought you'd show me some clothes.
Tell me the file number, maybe.
Sorry.
Didn't know you were in such a hurry.
I am now.
I just decided.
What the hell are you doing? Oh, Schultz.
- Well - Never mind, I won't ask.
The report's in.
Ballistics said it was the.
22 that killed her.
So what now? More beach-combing? I've already asked for ten more men.
I gotta go see her sister again.
What? But she is not at home.
She left shortly after you were here, Lieutenant, several hours ago.
All right, Mr Jennings, then.
Oh, he is with her.
They are both together.
Excuse me, ma'am, but since both their cars are here - I saw 'em myself Well, Ms McCurdy has lots of cars.
They took the Rolls.
Mr Jennings was driving.
I saw them go myself.
The Rolls? All right, where? Where'd they go? Well, I heard a telephone, some sales lady in Beverly Hills.
There we go.
Now, the fitter can ease these shoulders No, no, that'll be fine.
This isn't gonna work anyway.
Oh, please! It makes me look like a French poodle.
Oh, it does not.
You just need a lighter colour.
- Could we see something lighter? - Certainly, sir.
- Wayne, I just can't wear things like this.
- Of course you can.
Do something with your hair You know what'd look fabulous with this? - What? - A black linen dinner jacket.
- Miss? - And stop giving me orders.
Look, I'm really sorry.
I'm just all mixed up.
I'm all mixed up.
Besides, I'm just going to Arrowhead to get away from people - reporters, TV Hey, hey Shh I'll take care of all of them.
Don't you worry.
And I'll take good care of you.
I just thought we'd sneak out for dinner, so I'd like you to have some new clothes.
All right.
I just wanna get out of here before I lose my mind.
And if I do go with you Oh, my God.
Oh, there you are.
I've been looking all over for you two.
- What is it? Do you have any new leads? - Well, we found a gun.
- I told you that.
- Does it mean anything? - Yes, sir.
It's the murder weapon.
- It is? But I want you to know I finally realised it couldn't have been a thief that did this.
It what? Well, we know that when you shot Ms Goren with her own gun she'd been dead for a while.
Do you have to keep bringing it up? Can't you see Ms McCurdy's suffered enough? I just want you to know that Ms Goren was not shot in a struggle with an intruder.
Well, if it wasn't an intruder Don't say a word till you've contacted your attorney.
What I'm trying to say is that your sister was probably shot in cold blood.
- Maybe even while she was still asleep.
- Asleep? - Who would do such a thing? - You don't even have to talk to him.
Ms McCurdy, there's just one thing I wanna know about your sister.
Now, she was wearing white socks.
Knee-highs.
And her secretary told me that she wore those socks when she wore slacks.
- Is that true? - Her secretary was probably right.
So? - Did she wear slacks often? - No.
- When did she wear 'em? - When she wanted to be comfortable.
Would she wear slacks to travel on a plane? Theresa always wore slacks on a plane.
- Well, that's it.
I know who did it.
- What the hell are you talking about? You, Mr Jennings.
I guess you figured you could be headed back to Palm Springs and beat the early-morning traffic.
You could be playing tennis before nine o'clock and nobody would even know you'd been gone.
You're out of your mind! I didn't even go through Los Angeles until 6:25am, remember? I made a call to Helen and left a message.
Sure, on an answering service that you knew would record the time.
And you had to shout because you said you could hear all that honking from the trucks on the freeway.
But we got the sound lab on that, and you know what they think caused that racket? - Crows.
- Crows? You know, those birds.
Like the ones we disturbed out with those cable guys.
I didn't even arrive at Theresa's house until seven.
Those guys had already left.
No, sir, you were already there before they arrived.
You had already killed her.
Then when the cable guys came you were trapped you couldn't drive away without being seen, so you had to wait.
Now you can't get to Palm Springs early enough, because you can't beat the traffic.
- Wayne - He's making it up! Just relax.
So now, Mr Jennings, you do just like a juggler does you drop one plan and you grab another.
When the cable truck leaves, you kill her with a different gun, knowing that if you ever got caught you could always confess, and nobody would ever suspect that you killed Ms Goren not once, but twice.
- Oh, my God.
- That's a lie! You can't prove a word of it.
I'm sorry, but that's the way it happened, and I can prove every bit of it.
Because I was just at the morgue and I made a discovery.
- Your sister didn't even dress herself.
- Didn't what? She didn't dress herself.
Whoever shot her dressed her.
And that person had to be close to her close enough to know that she would be getting on a plane and wearing slacks.
Well, Mavis knew, Lieutenant.
And I knew.
Oh, it couldn't have been a woman, because that person made a big mistake, the kind of mistake that only a man would make.
- You're crazy.
- Shut up.
- What possible mistake? - Here, I'll show you.
- All right.
- This is how we found her.
In her underwear and bathrobe with her right thigh exposed.
- Yes, I've seen that.
- Do you see that speck on her right hip? Just barely.
It's been bothering me for two days.
It just didn't seem right.
- Give me that! - But it's very small, so I had it blown up.
Now you can tell what it really is.
Well, it's just a label sticking out from under a waistband.
A label.
How ridiculous can you get?! Well, Mr Jennings, I guess nobody knows everything about a woman, not even you.
Let me see that again.
You bastard! I'll kill you! I will kill you! I will kill you! You killed her! All right, book him.
Suspicion of murder.
Er, ma'am? Your maid is here, she's waiting outside, and we'll drive you home in one of our cars.
Thank you, Lieutenant.
Columbo, I don't understand.
What the hell is wrong with this damn picture? Well, here, let me show you on these panties.
Hold this up.
Oh, well, this is Vanity Fair, but the label's on the left side - where they usually are.
American-made panties always used to be on the left - my wife told me that.
But Ms Goren's panties were Maidenform.
I saw them in the drawer.
That's what my wife wears.
And Maidenform panties are always on the left.
The panties I just saw in the morgue, left side.
But in the photograph there of the body, that label is on the right side.
So how did the label get from over here all the way around to over there? Well, there's only one answer.
The panties were put on backwards.
And you don't think she would do a thing like that herself, do you? Ahem.