Robert Blake (born September 18, 1933) is an actor.
Born as Michael James Vijencio Gubitosi in Nutley, New Jersey, Blake started his acting career at age 5 playing Mickey in the Our Gang movie series. He also appeared as the Indian boy "Little Beaver" in the "Red Ryder" western film series.
Blake is probably best known for his Emmy Award-winning title role in the 1970s television drama Baretta, in which he played an undercover police detective who specialized in disguises. Trademarks of the show include his pet cockatoo, and a memorable theme song (Don't do the crime if you can't do the time...) written and sung by Sammy Davis, Jr.. He has also performed in many movies as an adult, and was particularly acclaimed for playing mass murderer Perry Smith in the screen version of Truman Capote's In Cold Blood and as a highway patrolman in the movie Electra Glide in Blue.
Blake was known to have had a troubled childhood including abuse by an alcoholic father, and was prone to violence, which caused him to be frequently expelled from schools. He was drafted into the army in 1950, and spent some of that time in the stockade as well. Throughout his life he suffered from periodic depression, abused alcohol and drugs, and was involved in frequent fights.
On April 18, 2002, he was arrested and charged with the murder of his wife, Bonnie Lee Bakely, who had been shot to death on May 4 of the previous year while sitting in her car outside Vitello's Restaurant. Blake's bodyguard Earle Caldwell was also arrested and charged with conspiracy in connection with the murder.