Guilty - beyond a reasonable doubt - such is the incontrovertible law which pardons the innocent and condemns the guilty. But just how fallible is the process of law? To what extent can deceit, prejudice and the cruel powers of fate intervene to set a murderer free, or send an innocent man to the electric chair ... Crusading publisher Austin Spenser wants to prove a point about the insufficiency of circumstantial evidence. Spencer talks his prospective son-in-law Tom Garrett into participating in a hoax, the better to expose the alleged ineptitude of conviction-happy DA. Tom will plant clues indicating that he is the murderer of a nightclub dancer, then stand trial for murder; just as the jury reaches its inevitable guilty verdict, Spencer will step forth to reveal the set-up and humiliate the DA. Somewhat surprisingly, Tom eagerly agrees to this subterfuge. Unfortunately, an unforeseen event renders their perfectly formed scheme useless.