(last update: October 30, 2001)

ADAM-12 was a spin-off of DRAGNET (1966), created & produced by Jack Webb (Sgt. Joe Friday).   Adam-12 was produced by the Mark VII Production Group owned by Jack Webb & Stanley Meyer, and Adam-12 Productions in association with Universal Studios Television and MCA Incorporated.  Producers in the series were: (1) Robert A. Cinader [Co-Creator], (2) Jim Doherty  (3) Herman Saunders  (4) Tom Williams.  Stanley Meyer (1914-1999) served as an Executive Producer as co-owner of Mark VII Ltd.  Adam-12 ran on the NBC Television Network from 1968 to 1975. Early characters appearing prior to the Adam-12 series were actors Kent McCord (originally appeared in "DRAGNET" as actor "Kent McWhirter") as a patrolman, and William Boyett as Sgt. MacDonald in many Dragnet episodes.   Dragnet 1966 featured Jack Webb as Police Sergeant "Joe Friday, wearing LAPD badge number #714, did you also know he carried a Lieutenant's Badge - Badge Number #714 from the 1950's version of DRAGNET?    That badge (Lt. 714) was used in earlier episodes of Dragnet in the 1950's.  Jack Webb owned two of these LAPD Lieutenant badges.  Then LAPD Sergeant Dan Cooke (technical adviser) would later wear LAPD LIEUTENANT Badge #714 when has was promoted to Lieutenant on February 2, 1974.  Lt. Cooke died in 1999.  His badge will be placed with Jack Webb's at the LA Police Academy.

Adam-12 starred Martin Milner as Officer Pete Malloy (Badge 744), and Kent McCord as Officer Jim Reed (Badge 2430).

Other characters in the show from its inception included:

More detailed information on Adam-12 is available from the Internet Movie Database
I have submitted most of the information on casting, so please visit often as many details are updated frequently, as well as viewer comments about the show.


A crime drama with a wholesome family appearance, "Adam-12" premiered on Saturday, September 21, 1968 to August 26, 1975, on the NBC Television Network. A total of 174 episodes were filmed over its eight year run.  VHS video tapes were released through Universal/MCA and Adam-12 Productions Inc. in 1998 through Columbia House (check the main menu link).  The Police Station depicted in the series was the "Rampart" Station, located at Benton Way and Temple in the "Echo Park" section of Los Angeles of the Hollywood Freeway (101) near downtown west of the 110.

Click here for a map of the station - located at 2710 West Temple Street, Los Angeles, California.

Basic Car Map of the Rampart Division - current beat system

(Department Info submitted by Chuck McCarthy & Officers of the LAPD).

Background: Los Angeles - Present Day (1968-75) "LAPD Central Division"



After his young partner is killed in a gun battle three weeks earlier, 7-year Veteran Patrol Officer "Pete" Peter J. (Joseph) Malloy (Badge #744), bitter & disillusioned, is scheduled to resign at end of watch.  Malloy is teamed with an over-eager rookie partner, "Jim" James A. Reed (Badge #2430).  Officer Malloy feeling responsible for his new partner after the shift, is determined to keep his new partner safe and alive.  Weekly episodes involve daily assignments, close teamwork, and then-current law enforcement procedures from the files of the L.A.P.D.

Adam-12 was Created and Produced by: Jack Webb & Robert A. Cinader - Mark VII and Universal Television.

  • Producers:  Robert A. Cinader [Creator], Jim Doherty, Herman Saunders, and Tom Williams.
  • Directors:  Dennis Donnelly, Harry Morgan, Jack Webb, Hollingsworth Morse, John Randolph (Jack Webb Pseudomyn), & James Neilson.
  • Music:  Frank Comstock
  • Music Supervision:  Stanley Wilson
  • Writers:  Stephen J. Cannell as a Writer and Story Editor & more episodes than anyone were written by Leo V. Gordon.
Over its run on network television, "Adam-12" premiered on Saturday nights at 7:30 pm, and moved to the 8:30 pm time slot. In 1971, the series was moved to Wednesday nights at 8:00 pm, and moved again in 1974 to Tuesdays at 8:00 pm. Over the years it premiered, it took on competition such as "Baretta," 'Starsky & Hutch," "SWAT," "The Rookies," "The Six Million Dollar Man" and was eventually pushed aside by NBC shows "EMERGENCY!", "Police Story", and "Police Woman" which were a bit more graphic. The show was replaced by the NBC TV series "Movin' On."

"Adam-12" was rated 92nd of the top 100 series programs ever produced until 1980.  In its seven seasons, it ranked #12 in 1970, #8 in 1971, and #11 in 1972. "Adam-12" was named best drama program in 1970 and 1971 by the Quigley Champion Awards.

As the Executive Producer and Creator, Jack Webb demanded realism in the show, actual dispatch procedures were used as well as LAPD dispatchers, actual LAPD stations and authentic patrol vehicles, badges, & vehicles were depicted in the series - and the Officers always - ALWAYS, wore their uniform hats whenever they left the patrol car and appeared outside a building as required by LAPD procedures at the time. The television show even used the LAPD call sign of "KMA-367" for its police radio depictions.

Myth -vs- Reality:

Left to Right...Shop Number Stencil / the Motrac/Motran radios still used today (w/channel select switch is removed) / the "Can Lights" with Division and Shop Numbers.

  • The "1-ADAM-12" Unit Designation was technically incorrect.  There are 18 stations [Divisions] in the City of Los Angeles.  Station 1 is Central Division.  Two-person patrol units are designated "ADAM" Units. - I.D. #12 would be their assigned area. So, "1-ADAM-12" was a two-person patrol unit working out of Central Division. But they didn't did they?  They were shown working out of Rampart Division, which is Division 2.  Technically then, they should have been 2-ADAM-12.  Several reasons for the recognized technical flaw: "1-ADAM-12" had a much better sound to it, Rampart Division had just recently built one of the newer stations at the time in 1965, and traffic in/around Central Division was a problem.   There is no "12" unit designator for the Rampart Division Patrol Section either.  For more information check out the LAPD site and visit the Rampart Division Community Section.

  • The actors referred to the "L" car occasionally and this was a one man patrol vehicle.  Jack Webb referred to the "L" car as a "lonely car."

  • Flaws; on the old can lights ("tin cans") on the patrol cars, the designation "1-012" was also incorrect in earlier versions of the show. The side of the can lights should have shown the station [Division] the car was assigned to and the last three numbers of the shop number (not the assigned area).  Current LAPD patrol units have the shop number on the roof and the Division stenciled on the trunk in white numbers for helicopter identification.

  • The number on the roof "0-1-2" should have been the shop number of the vehicle, not the beat assignment - the air units identified the unit in this manner to communicate with the patrol officers.  The 1971 Plymouth Satellite and AMC Matador had the "0-1-2" stenciled on the roof, the first year model Belvederes did not.

  • A NOTE from Tom Williams (one of the show's Producer's) "In the first few years the numbers were as you stated but we combined the "shop number" and "area division" number because it was causing too much confusion between the two!   Adam-12 is [was] the "radio designation" for the unit.   The number on the roof was "0-1-2" because the "shop-number" of the unit was "85012."

  • The Red/Amber Units were known as "Tin Cans & Mickey Mouse Ears." The units had steady red lenses facing forward and flashing amber lights facing the rear.

  • The radios used in the series were Motorola "Motrac" & Motran series radios and they are indeed still used today (30+ years). The "Motrac" series radios were half tube and half transistors with the receiver being the latter. The Mocom 70 was all transistorized and not used by LAPD to my knowledge.  (Courtesy of the L.A. City radio shop).

  • In 1973/1974, the LAPD Series "6" -  "POLICEMAN" badges were changed to "POLICE OFFICER" with the addition of women to the Field Patrol Division.

  • ALL license plate letter sequences used on the show (standard & commercial plates) were non-issuable as per CA DMV regulations. On both the gold-on-black & gold-on-blue tags the letters "I" (IDA) & "O" (OCEAN) were NEVER issued next to a number to avoid confusion with the #'s 1 & 0. Thus, the tag# LXI 483 (lincoln-xray-ida) was never issued in real life. You will notice that ALL tag #'s used on Adam-12 either ended in I or O (black plates) or started with I or O (blue plates). Also, as a sidebar, CA plates are issued in order, so blue tags would have started w/ 000 AAA & so on...Commercial tags, which contained 1 letter & 5 #'s, also had only an "I" or "O" on the show.   As far as the street addresses are concerned, any cross-streets (corner of "x & y") actually parallel with numbers being either too high, too low, or simply didn't exist.
  • (submitted by Adam-12 fan Mark VanCleve)
    Adam-12 and Dragnet are the only series honored to use genuine LAPD badges in the filming of the show. Jack Webb was buried with full LAPD Honors, and his badge was retired. It is the only badge in the history of LAPD given to a civilian.

    Thanks to LAPD Officers: "Otter" / "Brent" (Air Support Division) / Sgt. Dave Twitchell / Sgt. Rick Plows / and fan Kurt Loerzel.
    And of course - Tom Williams, Adam-12 Producer (1973-75).
    Copyright 1994-2001 - David Burns