Veteran character actor Robert Sorrells charged in shooting death of bar patron

Tuesday, July 27th 2004, 5:58 am
By: News On 6

SIMI VALLEY, Calif. (AP) _ A veteran character actor who appeared in such films as ``Death of a Gunfighter'' and ``Gunfight in Abilene'' was arrested for investigation of murder after witnesses told police he walked into a neighborhood bar and shot two patrons, killing one.

Robert Sorrells, 74, was arrested about three blocks from the bar shortly after Saturday's shooting, authorities said.

He was booked for investigation of murder and attempted murder and held at the Ventura County Jail. Police Sgt. Paul Fitzgerald declined to say whether authorities knew of a motive, but said Sorrells had visited the bar before.

A bartender told the Daily News of Los Angeles that Sorrells had been at the bar until it closed Friday night, returned Saturday morning looking for his credit card, then returned again in the afternoon and opened fire.

Police said he shot Arthur De Long, 45, in the back and Edward Sanchez, 40, in the face and back. De Long was killed. Sanchez, 40, was hospitalized in serious condition.

Sorrells acted in a number of films and TV shows in a career dating to the 1950s. He had appeared often on such popular TV Westerns as ``Gunsmoke,'' ``Rawhide'' and ``Bonanza,'' as well as on ``The Waltons,'' ``Kung Fu'' and ``The Fall Guy.'' His more recent film credits included ``Nowhere to Run,'' ``Fletch'' and ``Bound For Glory.''