Below-par Wingate (The Eye of Anna, etc.), who, here, has FBI-trained Chief of Police Mark Shigata, of Bayport, Texas, almost shot by an ex-cop, current prison escapee Steve Hansen, scheduled to be executed for murdering his wife and adopted daughter. Hansen was actually looking for Shigata's predecessor, Dale Shipp, who, he insists, framed him and drove his wife to murdering the pregnant Gaylene, then committing suicide. Shigata tosses Hansen back his badge and gun, and the two reopen the Hansen investigation. Among their findings: Shipp clearly railroaded Hansen into jail. Another murder occurs--Hansen again seems the most likely suspect--before the duo discover that Shipp's original cover-up was not planned to conceal his guilt, but that of someone else. The tempo here is placid--occasionally enlivened by a hail of bullets--and the shoddy plotting includes an easily spotted decoy (Shipp) and killer. Shigata and Hansen, however, are likable allies who may be shown to better advantage next time.