Quincy, M.E, a man who must have been a nightmare to work with! Quincy was a crusading Medical Examiner in Los Angeles, an expert at his job he was always capable of finding something that everyone else missed. A small clue that would go against all the rest of the evidence in a case and would lead to him arguing with his boss, Asten, and/or the investigating detective, nearly always Monahan. Quincy started of as a straight forward crime series with a difference, it was a M.E. investigating not a police officer or private eye.As the series went from strength to strength the writers, probably with a little push from Klugman, started bringing in stories about social injustice rather than criminal. Most of the time this worked, in fact it is sometimes interesting to see that some of the things highlighted still have not changed even now! Sometimes it came over a little preachy but the show can never be faulted for trying to enlighten the eyes of its viewers.
Dr. Asten asks Quincy to stop of on his way to his fishing holiday to do an autopsy on a young boy. The coroner in the area wants back up evidence to help him close down the foster child home that was looking after the boy and other children. To help out one boy Emily and Quincy get the local authorities to try out a new scheme. The idea of this scheme is that a qualified therapist lives with the troubled family to try and stop any flashpoints from occurring, hoping that this will then enable the family to be able to live happily together.
A midwife, Olivia, is approached in the street and asked to help deliver a baby. She knows that she should not get involved but can see that the mother's friend is desperate for help. She goes to their aid but the baby dies in childbirth. The hospital they rushed the baby to when it became apparent that she couldn't help decides that her negligence caused the baby's death. The next thing Olivia knows she is being arrested for murder! Dr. Reed, a friend of Olivia's, visits Quincy and asks him to do his own autopsy on the baby. She hopes that he will find something that will help clear her friend.
A sick woman with cancer leaves the hospital and dies. Those that have had physical contact with her die. Quincy soon discovers a new virus is the culprit of the deaths and hurries to find the cause.
When a potential Olympic champion is cut down in his prime his coach is accused of negligent homicide. A young lawyer, the only man who is willing to defend him, must rely on Quincy to find evidence to clear his clients' name.
Emily calls off the wedding when Quincy fails to make it to the rehearsal, the last straw as far as she is concerned. Quincy seems to be more interested in the tales Edna has to tell about her husbands' death. Was it murder as she claims or are her statements just the ravings of a mad woman?
An accident at a club leaves JJ Chandler, a top country singer, badly burned and in intensive care. Sgt, Wendell, a narcotics cop, believes Chandler freebasing cocaine caused the accident; the only problem is getting any proof, or a witness. While Wendell is trying to find someone who will testify Quincy begins to realize how many drug overdose victims he has dealt with during his time with the coroners office. He decides that there must be something he can do about it and means to do everything he can to stop the proliferation of drugs in Los Angeles.
A medical examiner starts making basic mistakes, mistakes that are putting her job on the line and are caused by her alcohol binges. She is heading deeper and deeper into alcoholism and it may be that only Quincy can help her before she falls too far.
A woman with psychic powers helps the police track down a serial killer.
Quincy continues in his quest to get close down Dr. Colella's surgery and stop him from continuing to issue prescriptions for drug addicts. This becomes less of a problem though after Marty Herrera, the young would be doctor, is arrested for killing Dr. Colella! Quincy doesn't believe the boy did it but finds that the evidence seems to be pointing straight at him.
After his furniture warehouse is burnt down Ted Locke, a friend of Quincy's finds he is suspected of arson and murder. A lack of evidence makes the DA reluctant to press charges though. Enter Federal Prosecutor Philip St.John, he suggests avoiding a normal court trial and charges Locke with mail fraud, based on his claims for payment from his insurance company, which allows him to bring him before a Federal Grand Jury. When the â€˜trial' starts Quincy discovers that there a literally no rules in a grand jury and the defendant can have no representation to help in defending himself. Quincy decides that he is not going to stand for this and tries to help his friend out.
When a young girl is killed in a drive by shooting a young 14 year-old boy is quickly arrested. The boy, Ethan, was part of a special program trying to get kids out of gangs and trouble. Ethan denies having had anything to do with the shooting, but if he doesn't tell who did do it or if Quincy and the probation people cannot find them then not only will he end up in prison but the special program will be closed down.
Kenny Kelso, a young father, is seriously injured in a work accident and loses his arm. His arm is found and the paramedics take both him and his limb to a new place, Experiment Hope, where it may be possible to reattach them. The Doctor in charge, Gabriel McCracken, is the man behind the revolutionary new techniques and does everything he can to make sure that Kenny will be able to use his arm again.
An autopsy on a college football star reveals a congenital brain disease, and Quincy urges the victim's younger brother to stay out of the next high school game. But the boy's father and the school are determined to win the championship at any cost.
An old lady is attacked and killed in her own apartment. Quincy is horrified that someone could so callously attack an old woman and is determined to find evidence that will convict the killer. Later, after an evening visit to her apartment looking for more evidence Quincy himself is attacked and mugged, leaving him scared to go out in the dark and making him jump at every sound.
A woman, Vicki Maguire, who has suffered from agoraphobia, manages to finally leave her house, for the first time in seven years. While walking her dog along the beach beside her house she looks in through the window of another house, and witnesses what she thinks is a woman being strangled. The police are called and when Monahan and Brill get to the house there is no body, no sign of a struggle and a completely different man in residence. No one believes her story, except for her psychologist Dr. Rainer, and she goes to see Quincy. She persuades him that the woman wasn't seeing things and that he should help her find out the truth, before she suffers a relapse and will never be able to leave her house again.
With the cruise ship being prevented from docking at any of the islands in the area it is down to Quincy and Janet to find out exactly what the disease on board is before everyone on the ship finds out and starts panicking.
Quincy and Emily's wedding is fast approaching and there are many things that still need arranging. Emily has brought in Winslow, a wedding arranger to help. While the wedding arrangements are proceeding a body comes into the coroner's office, an old man who died of natural causes in a rest home, just after his 65th wedding anniversary. After the autopsy the wife of the deceased man, Edna, comes in to see Quincy and tells him that she killed her husband.
When a young mother suffers from a nerve disease, Quincy fights the drug companies and the government to get her the medication she needs.
A young boy, Tim, goes to do some welding at his workplace and ends up dying in an explosion. One of Asten's top field investigators, Arnold Chatham, thinks that it should not have happened. He discovers that Tim couldn't read and continues his investigation while Quincy tries to find out how someone who couldn't read managed to get through school.
When a prized racehorse, belonging to Nelson Spencer a friend of Quincy's, dies suddenly after a big race, an insurance investigation uncovers foul play. The expert insurance investigator sent by the insurance company is Quincy's latest girlfriend. A situation that causes problems for Quincy, stuck between his girlfriend and his friend.
An old lady is shot and killed by a burglar in her own home. When he arrives Quincy recognizes her as being one half of a couple of entertainers he saw in his youth. He remembers reading about their brilliance and wonders what happened to her old partner, Morris Perlmutter. He tries to find as much evidence as he can and then decides that he is going to find Morris. Meanwhile Morris is trying to get his big break in TV with the part of an old man in a play that is going to be broadcast live.
A man who was a prisoner in the Nazi concentration camps is run down and killed after he recognizes the man who was his tormentor in the camp. He manages to get a message sent to his friend, Heime, before his death and he tries to convince Quincy that it was murder, not an accident. At the same time Heime, who runs a Holocaust museum, has to deal with a rich, powerful man who spends his time proclaiming that the Holocaust never happened.
A family is violently murdered in their own home. The man arrested is the son and brother of the family members. He is a schizophrenic who blames everything on â€˜The Beast', an alter ego inside his head who can take him over if he stops taking his medication. Quincy thinks, after talking with the DA, that he could be making it all up to get off on an insanity plea and tries to prove his theory.
Quincy has to testify in the court of a small town. The witnesses in the case are pressurized into lying and Harry Muller, a bullying murderer, goes free. Within half an hour of the court case having been dismissed Harry Muller is found dead. The six men in the shop where he died all say they killed him, firing one shot each from his gun. The police chief is happy to call the death self defense but Quincy knows that it was murder and insists he will find out which one of them really killed him.
The smuggling of Nazi-held gems from Cairo to Los Angeles in an Egyptian mummy leaves several corpses in its wake.