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Bogart portrays Glenn Griffin, the leader of a trio of escaped convicts who invade the Daniel Hilliard family’s suburban home in Indianapolis and hold four members of a family hostage. There they await the arrival of a package from Griffin’s girlfriend, which contains funds to aid the three fugitives in their escape.
Police organize a statewide manhunt for the escapees and eventually discover the distraught family’s plight. Bogart’s character menaces and torments the Hilliards and threatens to kill them, and an unfortunate garbage collector who happens upon the situation is murdered. At the climax of the film, Hilliard (March) throws Griffin (Bogart) out of the house by holding Griffin’s loaded gun on him. Griffin is subsequently gunned down when he hurls his unloaded gun at a police spotlight and tries to make a break for it.