Joe Mannix : [Norman Thompson enters Joe's office] Mr. Thompson.
Norman Thompson : Uh, th-thank you for seeing me, Mr. Mannix.
Joe Mannix : Please, sit down.
Norman Thompson : Oh, uh, thank you. I, uh...
Norman Thompson : I don't quite know, uh, wh-where to begin. I...
Joe Mannix : Well, now, just take your time. What seems to be bothering you?
Norman Thompson : Well, it-it's something that I saw the night before last, or at least I'm... I'm pretty sure I saw it.
Joe Mannix : What's that?
Norman Thompson : A man shot.
Joe Mannix : Go on, Mr. Thompson.
Norman Thompson : [sighs] Well, it-it was just after 2:00 in the morning and I was on my way to my hotel, the Markham- I always stay the Markham when I'm in town- and heard what I-I-I thought at first was a backfire. Only there were... there were no other cars on the street. So-so then I realized the sound must've come from one of the buildings- maybe a-a window or the roof. I looked up; there was nothing. And then I-I-I looked across the street.
Joe Mannix : And?
Norman Thompson : Well, outside one of the apartment buildings, I saw a man had fallen in the bushes, and I realized what I had heard was a gun and the man was shot. And I also knew from the way he was lying there that...
Norman Thompson : ... that he was dead.
Joe Mannix : "The way he was lying there"?
Norman Thompson : Well, I-I-I was in the army in Korea, Mr. Mannix. You get to know when a man has been... hit fatally.
Joe Mannix : What did you do?
Norman Thompson : Well, I'm-I'm afraid I panicked. I went on to my hotel.
Joe Mannix : And, uh, what do you want me to do, Mr. Thompson?
Norman Thompson : To find out if I saw what I think I saw. I've-I've heard nothing about it since.
Joe Mannix : Well, you know it would be much easier and a lot cheaper if you called the police department. Now, they would do it for nothing.
Norman Thompson : I suppose so. I mean, I-I know I should have... have notified the police, but I-I-I just... I can't afford to get involved right now.
Joe Mannix : Why not?
Norman Thompson : [chuckles softly] Well, I-I was our that evening with a lady, a... a married lady. I... I was afraid that if I called the police, there'd be questions.
Joe Mannix : Now, uh, you say you were across the street, and you're pretty sure about all of this? The shot and the man dead in the bushes?
Norman Thompson : Yes. The sound of the gunshot and the body. The combination scared me. All I could think of was getting out of there, because of my... my friend.
Joe Mannix : The lady.
Norman Thompson : Yes.
Joe Mannix : And you went straight to the Markham?
Norman Thompson : Yes, I've been watching the newspapers, and there's been nothing. Nothing! It's driving me crazy. I-I see a man shot dead, and then... nothing. I'm-I'm even beginning to wonder if...
Joe Mannix : Wonder what?
Norman Thompson : [sighs] Well, it's possible that I was mistaken, and that he wasn't dead, he was just hurt, and that he died because I failed to notify somebody in time. I mean, I-I've got to know, Mr. Mannix. You understand, don't you?
[Mannix just smiles at Thompson]
Norman Thompson : Can you help me?
Joe Mannix : Well... I'll do what I can, Mr. Thompson.
Norman Thompson : I-I-I can't ask you to spend a lot of time on this. I-I'm not a rich man.
Joe Mannix : Well, let's not worry about that right now. And so far, there isn't even a case.