Robert Blake, the ‘Lost Highway’ and ‘In Cold Blood’ actor accused of murdering his wife, dies

As reported by the Associated Press, Robert Blake, actor of ‘Lost Highway’ and ‘In Cold Blood’, He has died at the age of 89 of heart disease. Born Michael James Vincenzo Gubitosi in New Jersey to an Italian father and an Italian-American mother, Blake was a child actor, beginning to play small roles at the age of 6 in westerns and shorts from the 1930s and 1940s, where he was sometimes uncredited. He appeared, for example, in ‘I love you again’, ‘The Big Rumble’ or ‘The Treasure of Sierra Madre’. After finishing serving in the army and after going through Jeff Corey’s acting school, he returned to acting as the lead, in ‘The Purple Gang’ and later ‘In Cold Blood’, an adaptation of Truman’s work. Capote directed by Richard Brooks.

In the 70s he became a star on television with the series ‘Baretta’, for which he won an Emmy, and we also saw him on the big screen in titles such as ‘The Valley of the Fugitive’, ‘Corky’ or ‘The skin on the asphalt’. In the two decades since his career slowed, but he won another Emmy for his role in ‘Blood Feud,’ he appeared in ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘Money Train Robbery’ and in 1997 He played his last role: the mysterious man from ‘Lost Highway’.

The murder of Bonny Lee Bakley

Blake met what would be his second wife, Bonny Lee Bakley, in 1999; for Bakley it was her tenth marriage. She had a reputation for exploiting the elderly for money and when she became pregnant (with her fourth child) she told both Blake and Christian Brando, son of Marlon Brando, that they were the parents of the baby. After a DNA test pointed to Blake as the true parent, they were married in November 2000, although she went to live in Blake’s guest house in Studio City. On May 4, 2001, Bakley was shot in the head while inside her car after having dinner with her husband at a restaurant called Vitello. Blake claimed that he had returned to the establishment because he had forgotten his pistol inside and that the crime was committed in that space of time.

The actor was arrested on April 18, 2002 and accused of the murder, his bodyguard was also arrested as an accomplice. Voice actor Ronald “Duffy” Hambleton accused Blake of trying to hire him to commit the crime. His bail, after a year in pretrial detention, was 1.5 million dollars and his case inspired an episode of ‘Law and Order’. The trial was held in March 2005 and Blake was found “not guilty” and acquitted for lack of evidence. Later, Bakley’s four children filed a civil suit against Blake, and this time the jury ordered him to pay $30 million to his ex-wife’s family, but he declared bankruptcy and went to work at a Ranch. His daughter with Bonnie Lee Bakley, Rose Lenore Sophia Blake, was adopted by Noah Blake, his eldest son.