Pepper Burns was a crime scene photographer for the New York City Police Department in the 1940s. He frequently worked with Detective Mike Trapp whose specialty was solving murder mysteries.
On their first case they exposed Miss Walton, secretary of the wealthy Cyrus Crane as her employers killer, and both capture Pettibone, a butler who tries to get away with stealing his employer Mrs. Van Aster's diamond masquerade mask. The pair also helped expose Mr. Reins as the killer responsible for the murder of actress Brenda Kane after she attempted to blackmail him. Mike Trapp and Pepper Burns next exposed a Nazi killer who was hired to kill Jeff Hartley who was supposed to testify sedition trial. Later, the duo went to the movies and discover that Detective Peter Haggerty has been murdered. Learning that he was hunting down criminal Lars Logan, Trapp exposes Logan posing as one of the theater ushers and arrests him. Mike and Pepper then investigated the disappearance of Jim Cobb. Finding Cobb's gold tooth in the ashen driveway of his home, Trapp arrests his wife, who he explains burned her husbands bodies and dumped the ashes on the driveway. On their next case, Trapp and Burns investigated the murder of the foreign correspondent for the New York Daily News and reveal that the killer is his jealous co-worker Scott who wished to obtain the job. Mike Trapp and Pepper Burns investigate a check forgery at a local business firm. Trapp deduces that the man responsible is an elderly employee. They also investigated a country murder of a local hermit and determine that an area farmer was responsible. After they investigated the apparent suicide of wife of writer Pen Potter, and determine that the writer was responsible for murdering her. Mike and Pepper then exposed bank William Grayson as the Clutching Claw, a killer who is has been murdering his colleagues who stood to inherit a portion of a vast fortune. Mike Trapp and Pepper Burns then solved the theft of missing Radium from a hospital, exposing Dr. Keller as the theif when they reveal he was in possession of it by turning off the lights.
Pepper's involvement in Mike's cases soon began becoming more infrequent. He assisted Mike in capturing the killers responsible for the murder of "Big Chips" Malone, was present when Mike exposed a pair of siblings of murdering their wealthy aunt, and helped capture Joey Morgan and his gang after they robbed a post office.
Pepper Burns carried a camera commonly used by crime scene photographers of the 1940s.