Highway Patrol (1955–1959)
3 user

Plane Crash 

When a ranger checks the woods where a plane disappeared, it results in his murder and in the discovery of a kidnapped woman.


Leon Benson


Stuart Jerome (screenplay)


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Episode complete credited cast:
Broderick Crawford ... Dan Mathews
Guy Williams ... Officer Barney
Mack Williams Mack Williams ... Harry Barlow
Helen Brown Helen Brown ... Ellen Barlow
Richard Newton Richard Newton ... Steve Wasson
Gloria Grant Gloria Grant ... Ginny Barlow
Bob Hopkins Bob Hopkins ... Eddie Cooper
Tara Summers Tara Summers ... Cooper's Wife
Charles H. Gray ... Officer Edwards (as Charles Gray)
Art Gilmore ... Narrator (voice)


Dan Mathews and his officers discover the murder of a forest ranger who reported the possible crash landing of a small plane. They learn that the plane's owner is racketeer Harry Barlow and that he is accompanied by his wife and pilot Steve Wasson. They confront Barlow's group and learn that they are there to pay $100,000 in ransom for the return of the Barlowes' daughter Virginia. Dan knows that someone in the group is guilty of murder and suspects that the guilty party may be Wasson. His suspicions increase further when the kidnappers turn out to be two of Barlow's employees and Wasson volunteers to be taken as a hostage. Dan permits the kidnappers and their "hostage" to leave the ransom scene, but the surprised felons soon find themselves in an armed confrontation with Dan and his officers. Written by Sam Spear

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Action | Crime | Drama







Release Date:

March 1956 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The "CAA number" for the plane called in by the officer was N3534C. This is a valid US registration number, as of 2019, for a 1955 Cessna 170B registered to an individual in Loomis, California. See more »


The plane spotted by the ranger had a low wing configuration- the wing was below the cockpit. The plane spotted by Mathews on the ground had a high wing configuration, so 2 different planes were used for this footage. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: Not every crime in which the Highway Patrol is involved takes place in a car or on a highway. On the seventh of November, a case began when a forest ranger sighted a small airplane flying at a dangerously low altitude over the Ridgeway State Forest area and alerted the Highway Patrol for possible emergency aid.
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User Reviews

Taking Flight
24 February 2012 | by wes-connorsSee all my reviews

In Eagle Rock (a small Los Angeles-area community), chief Broderick Crawford (as Dan Mathews) and officer pal Guy Williams (as Barney) discover an abandoned plane and, nearby, a dead forest ranger. These mysteries lead Mr. Crawford to racketeer Mack Williams (as Harry Barlowe), his high-strung wife Helen Brown (stealing the episode, as Ellen), and private pilot Richard Newton (as Steve Wasson). Criminals in the 1950s might have noted how Ms. Brown, due to her gender, did not have the same "pat down" search as the men in her group. The trio are trying to solve a mystery of their own, involving crooked entrepreneur Bob Hopkins (as Eddie Cooper). Crawford must put these puzzling, seemingly disconnected situations together in less than thirty minutes...

***** Plane Crash (3/5/56) Leon Benson ~ Broderick Crawford, Helen Brown, Richard Newton, Mack Williams

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