Home Television Drama Witness, The

Witness, The

1 9 6 0 – 1 9 6 1 (USA)

First telecast on 29 September 1960, this CBS series attempted to dramatise the exploits and lifestyles of gangsters and rogues from the past and present in a format similar to a Congressional investigation.

Detailed research was conducted on all of the “witnesses” who were brought before the committee to explain or defend their activities. The first of these hearings starred Telly Savalas as Charles ‘Lucky’ Luciano.

Among the other figures whose lives were exposed on this show were Bugsy Siegel, Dutch Schultz, Al Capone, John Dillinger, James Walker (former New York City mayor) and Ma Barker.

The committee members asking the questions were all real attorneys and members of the New York Bar Association.

The final episode aired on 26 January 1961.

Court Reporter
Verne Collett
Court Clerk
William Griffis
Committee members
Charles Haydon
Paul McGrath
William Smithers
Frank Milan