Details, some of them conflicting, about the fateful night in the life of Bonnie Bakley, 44 -- the wife of 67-year-old actor Robert Blake who was killed last Friday -- emerge in this week's PEOPLE cover story. A witness on the scene shortly after the murder describes for PEOPLE a near hysterical Blake pacing up and down the street, occasionally vomiting, then slumping to the ground. "The cops were treating him with kid gloves," he says. In the days after the killing there was considerable confusion over exactly what had happened, PEOPLE also reveals. According to Blake's lawyer Harland Braun, the actor told police that after he and Bakley had walked back to his 1991 black Dodge Stealth -- parked not in the restaurant lot but on a side street -- the actor realized he had left his handgun back at the restaurant. (Braun says Blake, who had a permit, carried the pistol because Bakley feared for her safety.) Upon returning to the car, Blake told police, he found his wife slumped in the passenger seat, shot once beneath the right ear. After getting a neighbor to dial 911, Blake rushed back to the restaurant to summon more help. But Joseph Restivo, co-owner of the restaurant, says he saw the actor return only once -- evidently after the shooting. "He was saying she had been mugged or got shot and to call 911," says Restivo. Before Restivo could finish dialing, Blake told him to call it off. " 'It's okay, it's already done.' " Police, who are keeping quiet about their investigation, have said that Blake is not an official suspect in the case.
On Newsstands Now
- Brad's Devotion: The Inside Story
- Oklahoma Tornado: Heroic Rescues
- Michael Douglas on Catherine's Health
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine