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When outlaws steal the mine payroll from the Marlin City stage, one of the robbers' masks slips, allowing J. Frederick Merriwell, a passenger on the stage, and Ike, the driver, to see the man's face. After Ira arrives in town with news of the robbery, Walton, the owner of the mining company, offers a reward for the identification of the outlaw. Merriwell singles out cowboy Kit Russell as the man, and Kit is arrested for robbery. Kit's fellow gang members, however, force Merriwell to leave town and threaten to torch Ira's house if he testifies against Kit. With no witnesses, the charges are dropped, causing consternation among the citizenry. At a party in honor of Judge Ben Halverson's daughter Jeannie that night, Walton advocates the formation of a vigilante committee. Later, when Kit arrives at the party, all the respectable guests leave, upsetting Jeannie, who is fond of Kit. Speaking privately to Kit, the judge produces official documentation appointing Kit and his pal Ike as special government investigators, who are to expose the leader of the outlaws. Leaving his badge and papers with the judge for safe keeping, Kit goes to the saloon, where Snap, one of the bandits, announces a raid on the Walton's mining company that night. After stealing the gold bullion, the robbers are pursued by the miners. When Snap is shot in the crossfire, Kit rescues him and sends the other bandits riding away as decoys. Impatient with the progress of the law, Walton forms his own vigilante committee and hires Jim Turner to locate the outlaws. After Turner reports that he has tracked Kit's wagon to a cabin in the hills, Walton leads his men there and captures Kit and the others. When the judge hears that Walton plans a vigilante trial for the outlaws, he counsels Kit to divulge his true identity, but Kit refuses to do so until his mission is accomplished. The judge, Sheriff Logan and county commissioner Daniel Slocum attend the trial and watch as Kit and the others are found guilty and sentenced to hang. Later, in their cell, one of the outlaws, terrified by the thought of hanging, blurts out that Slocum is the leader of the gang. His mission accomplished, Kit tells Walton that he is a special investigator, but when Walton tries to verify Kit's claim with the sheriff and Slocum, both men deny any knowledge of his appointment. Overpowering his guards, Kit frees Ike and rides into town to collect his commission and badge as proof. Slocum also rides into town, and after notifying his gang that they have been exposed, he prepares to flee with his profits. Kit and Ike then trap Slocum in his office until reinforcements arrive. When the sheriff and his posse appear, the gang surrenders, but Slocum tries to sneak out the back with the money. Kit pursues and apprehends him, and as the outlaws are carted away to jail, Kit is thanked by Walton and forgiven by Jeannie.