In 2001, Robert Blake‘s wife Bonny Lee Bakley was shot and killed inside her car. One year later, the Holllywood actor was charged with her murder. A high-profile trial ensued, with Robert, now 84 years old, eventually being found not guilty. A jury also agreed that he did not hire a stuntman to kill his wife. Despite the not guilty verdict, Robert was found liable in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by Bonny’s three children and ordered to pay $30 million in 2005.
In tonight’s episode of Marcia Clark Investigates the First 48, the famous prosecutor looks into several theories surrounding Bonny’s murder — and if the Baretta star was really not responsible for her death. However, finding the answer to the nearly two decades old mystery is tricky considering Bonny was married eight times before tying the knot with Robert and was romantically linked to Christian Brando, the son of legend Marlon Brando, at the time of her death.
“There are different theories as to who killed Bonny Lee Bakley,” Marcia says on the show. “Did Robert Blake pull the trigger or did someone from her dark past?”
At the time of the murder trial, Robert was adamant he was innocent. “Bonnie had people that she burned. How bad I don’t know. Did she steal everything from them? We’ll leave that alone. But nobody really knew where Bonnie was. She had 15 ID cards. She had 15 credit cards. She had different places where she lived and nobody could ever find her if they were looking for her,” Robert told Piers Morgan in an interview. “But one day somebody opened the paper and saw that Bonnie just married Robert Blake and where does Robert Blake live. And what a couple of weeks later she was dead. I want you to chew on that for a bit.”
Bonny Lee’s daughter Holly in 2004.
Robert is still alive and well 17 years after his wife’s death — but what about Bonnie’s daughter Holly Gawron? She has been very outspoken about Robert and still blames him for her mother’s unsolved murder. “I was hoping he’d go to prison,” she told Closer magazine in 2015. “Robert Blake ruined my life.” She also defended her mother’s reputation, denying that the blonde beauty conned famous men into marrying her. “She was very ladylike,” Holly added. “And she worked really hard. She took care of people. She was very generous. And the coolest mom ever — she was everything to me.”
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