Matt's problems start when he jails Sergeant Wilks for drunk and disorderly conduct. The sergeant promises revenge for Matt's actions.
As Matt is throwing Wilks out of his office, an old friend and fellow lawman(now retired)comes in. The two of them adjourn to the Long Branch to talk over old times with Kitty and the others. Their conversation is overheard by Tony Serpa, who later shoots Matt's friend in the back and kills him.
Matt and the prisoner are ambushed at their camp by Serpa's former cohorts. They persuade Serpa to try out the noose they're supposedly rigging to hang Matt with and then kill Serpa. Matt is knocked unconscious, doused with whiskey, and then framed for the killing. The cavalry officers who find him are headed by Sergeant Wilks, who refuses to believe Matt's story.
Matt bides his time and, catching the cavalrymen left behind to watch him off guard, steals Buck back and rides him into the nearest town. He befriends the town drunk who assists Matt in finding the men who framed him.
Enlisting the aid of a few honest men, he confronts Serpa's gang as the cavalry catch up. Wilks wants to shoot Matt on sight but the townspeople suggest locking everyone up until the sheriff gets back and can send a telegram to sort things out. Serpa's gang members take the opportunity to start shooting. Wilks is killed, the gang members are rounded up, and Matt takes the town drunk back into the saloon to buy him a bottle of whiskey.