Cast & Crew
Johnny Mack Brown
Gunshots attract Steve Mason to the scene of a stagecoach ambush, but he arrives too late to prevent the murder of passenger Denny, who was returning home with his daughter Ruth after an illness. Ruth explains that her father owned the Triple A Ranch and asks Steve to bring his body there. Cowhand Lefty then drives the empty stagecoach back to town. In town, just after Lefty tells Paul Emery, the secret leader of a gang of rustlers, about Steve's arrival, the sheriff is notified that federal marshals are on the trail of notorious rustler Steve Saunders, who has escaped from jail and can be identified by a distinctive scar. Lefty tells Emery that Steve has such a scar, and Emery decides to blame Denny's murder on him. Emery rides out to the ranch to visit Ruth, but before he talks to her, he asks Dusty, her employee, if he has explained to Ruth about the effect the rustlers have had on the ranch. Dusty replies that shortly after her return, Ruth went for a ride, and he has yet to speak to her. Emery then questions Dusty about Steve. Meanwhile, Ruth goes to town to confront Bill Cole, the man her father named as one of his killers before he died. When Steve intervenes and suggests that Ruth let the law take its course, she protests that the sheriff is incapable of carrying out his duties. Over her objections, however, Steve takes Bill to jail, planning to set him against Emery later. When Emery returns to town, he tells Ruth that the ranch is in debt and advises her to sell it to Bart Brennan. After hiring Steve as her foreman, Ruth tells Emery that she does not intend to sell the ranch. When Ruth leaves, Emery tells Steve that he knows his real identity and suggests that he take over the rustling operation at the ranch in return for a quarter of the profits from the sale of the cattle. Steve agrees, planning to work undercover against the gang. Butch, one of Emery's men, resents having Steve as a boss, however, and plots to oust both Steve and Emery. That night, Lefty informs Ruth that Steve is rustling the cattle, and she investigates. Steve accidentally learns that Butch plans to kill Ruth and rescues her. He orders her to return to the ranch and then heads back to town to have a showdown with Butch. In the dark, Ruth stumbles across the rustlers' camp and witnesses Bill, who has escaped from jail, holding Emery and Brennan at gunpoint. From a hiding place, Lefty kills Bill. Later, in town, Steve is forced to tell Ruth that, although he has been impersonating Saunders, his real name is John Mason, and he is a representative of the Cattlemen's Association. Dusty sent for him when he became aware of Emery's plans. Emery and his gang ride into town and a shootout ensues, which ends when the federal marshal arrives. The sheriff reveals that he was pretending to be stupid in order to help Steve with his plan. Ruth then asks Steve to stay on and work on the ranch, but he replies that he must move on to his next job.
Johnny Mack Brown
The film's working title was The Roaring Range.