For two seasons, the Hal Roach Studio made "Public Defender". Interestingly, for three prior seasons they also made "Racket Squad"...and both starred the rather stiff Reed Hadley. They also had almost the same format and I could easily see folks mixing them up--though in one Hadley played a policeman and in the other a public defender. This episode of "Public Defender" was the last and is very similar to most of the previous shows...with Bart Matthews (Hadley) being more like a social worker trying to help a family than a typical lawyer.
The meek and mild-mannered Harry Nelson is in court--charged with grand theft. However, he absolutely refuses to allow Matthews to defend him and so Matthews decides to do some digging. After all, why would a middle-aged man with no criminal record suddenly steal so much money from his employer?! When Matthews meets with the family, the reason becomes obvious...and you REALLY hate the Nelson family when you learn what they're like!
While not one of the best episodes, this one is solid and worth seeing. And, if you are interested many of the episodes of "Racket Busters" and "Public Defender" are available for free download from archive.org--a site often linked to IMDb pages.
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