Robert Blake, the actor whose life was just as talked about off the screen as it was on, has died.
According to a statement released to the Associated Press on behalf of Blake’s niece, Noreen Austin, Blake died Thursday from heart disease at home surrounded by loved ones.
Blake was infamously charged with the murder of his second wife, Bonny Lee Bakley, after she was found dead outside Vitello’s restaurant in Los Angeles in 2001. Bakley had been shot in the head while sitting in Blake’s vehicle.
Blake told investigators he had gone back inside the restaurant to retrieve a pistol when Bakley was shot and killed. It was later determined his pistol was not the murder weapon.
Blake’s trial lasted about three months, but he was eventually found not guilty of murder and not guilty of one of the two counts of solicitation of murder … the second solicitation of murder charge was also eventually dropped.
Blake’s career in Hollywood spanned more than 50 years, starring in movies like “In Cold Blood,” “Lost Highway” and “Treasure of the Sierra Madre.” He also played Tony Baretta in “Baretta” … a role that won him an Emmy in 1975.
Blake was 89.