Ruth Lytton

Joyce Van Patten


Columbo Villains -  Ruth Lytton

Last Words to Columbo: "Lietenant, may I take your arm?"

In 'Old Fashioned Murder" The Lytton family is the proud owner of a museum, and siblings Ruth (played by Joyce van Patten) and Edward have dedicated their lives to its upkeep. However, with the museum struggling financially, Edward decides to sell it, a decision that Ruth vehemently opposes. Ruth hatches a plan to keep the museum in the family and enlists the help of her beloved niece, Janie. Janie hires Milton Schaeffer, a known thief and compulsive gambler, as the museum's new security guard, much to Edward's chagrin. When a double homicide occurs, with clues pointing to the involvement of the Lytton family, Columbo steps in to investigate. He delves into the family's personal history, looking for any motive that could explain Ruth's ruthless scheme to keep the museum in the family's hands. As the investigation unfolds, Columbo discovers a web of secrets and lies, and the truth behind the double homicide gradually emerges. With his characteristic wit and intuition, Columbo unravels the case and exposes Ruth's dark intentions.
Joyce Van Patten is an American actress who was born on March 9, 1934, in New York City. She comes from a family of actors, with both her parents and her younger brother, Dick Van Patten, being actors as well. Joyce Van Patten began her acting career on stage and made her Broadway debut in 1951 in the play 'The Green-Eyed People'. She went on to appear in several other Broadway productions before transitioning to television and film. Her notable television roles include appearances in 'The Danny Thomas Show', 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show', 'The Love Boat', and 'Desperate Housewives'. She also appeared in several films, including 'Grown Ups', 'The Bad News Bears', and 'St. Elmo's Fire'. Joyce Van Patten received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for her role in the 1973 television movie 'The Girl Most Likely To...'.