Blake Saw Wife as 'Low-Life': Prosecutor

12/21/2004 at 08:45 AM EST

Blake Saw Wife as 'Low-Life': Prosecutor
Ric Francis/AP
Actor Robert Blake remained stone-faced and somber as his trial for the murder of his wife of six months, Bonny Lee Bakley, finally got under way in a packed Los Angeles courtroom Monday – more than three and a half years after the 44-year-old woman was found shot point-blank in the family car outside an Italian restaurant where the couple had just dined.

Blake, 71, had no family members present in the courtroom – not even his daughter Delinah, 38, adoptive mother to Bakley's daughter Rose, 4, fathered by Blake as the result of an affair with Bakley that began with a one-night stand in August 1998.

Bakley's 24-year-old daughter, Holly Gawron, sat quietly in attendance with her attorney.

Prosecutor Shellie Samuels took less than two hours to lay out the people's case against the former Baretta star, whom she argued "formulated a plan to kill Bonny, (viewing) her as low-life trailer trash and wanted to physically remove her from (baby Rose's) life." Samuels claimed that when no one was willing to kill Bakley for him, "Blake did it himself."

Meanwhile, Blake's attorney, an aggressive Gerald Schwartzbach, declared there is no hard evidence fingering Blake as the gunman. "There is no DNA, no hairs, fibers or fingerprints, and no eyewitnesses connecting Mr. Blake to the gun," he said. "He was not the shooter."

Schwartzbach hacked away at the credibility of two stuntmen Samuels claimed had been approached by Blake to kill Bakley, saying that one of the men had used cocaine for more than 30 years, while the other abused methamphetamines "for many years."

Blake is charged with one count of murder with the special circumstance of lying in wait and two counts of solicitation of murder. He has pleaded not guilty.

Your Reaction

Follow Us

On Newsstands Now

Robin Roberts: How Loved Saved Me
  • Robin Roberts: How Loved Saved Me
  • Emma and Andrew: All About Hollywood's Cutest Couple
  • Prince George! More Yummy Photos

Pick up your copy on newsstands

Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine

Advertisement

From Our Partners

Watch It

Editors' Picks

From Our Partners



Sign up for our daily newsletter and other special offers.
    Choose your newsletters
Thank you for signing up! Your request may take up to one week to be processed.
    see all newsletters