The scene is the squad room and office in a New York police station. The playwright presents a fascinatingly realistic picture of routine cases brought into a metropolitan police station in the course of a day. Out of the welter of human misery, vice and stupidity there emerges the tragic and moving case of a decent young fellow who has stolen money from his employer. Though a woman who is in love with him comes to his help and the employer is offered everything that has been taken from him, the case has fallen into the hands of McLeod, a hardworking detective whose experience in police work has developed in him a mania for punishing all law breakers, whom he regards as incorrigibles. Nothing will satisfy him but brutal punishment. He is at work at the same time on a case involving an abortionist whose attorney, failing to move him by other means, forces McLeod's wife to confess to her husband that she had herself some years before made use of the services of the abortionist in question. Since McLeod worships his wife and finds in her the only happiness of his existence, his world collapses about him. The climax comes when McLeod gets involved with another prisoner who attempts to escape from the squad room with the aid of a revolver taken from one of the detectives. McLeod is shot and killed. This climax is a fitting end to McLeod's career. To the last, he had been bent upon doing what he considered his duty—in seeing that criminals obeyed the letter of the law at no matter what cost.
"A long-run hit in New York.