Arrow-right Camera

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Night 32° Partly Cloudy
News >  Nation/World

‘Rockford Files’ star Joe Santos dies at 84

Actor Joe Santos appears March 18, 1980, on the set of the NBC-TV comedy series “Me and Maxx,” in Los Angeles. (Wally Fong / Associated Press)
Actor Joe Santos appears March 18, 1980, on the set of the NBC-TV comedy series “Me and Maxx,” in Los Angeles. (Wally Fong / Associated Press)
Associated Press

NEW YORK – Joe Santos, who played Lieutenant Dennis Becker on “The Rockford Files,” has died at 84.

Santos died Friday in Santa Monica, California, after a heart attack earlier in the week, according to his agent Alicia Beekman.

Santos’ career spanned more than four decades, from a guest shot on “Naked City” in the early 1960s through a recurring role on “The Sopranos.”

But he was best known as Lieutenant Becker, the pal and grudging helpmate of L.A. private eye Jim Rockford (James Garner) on NBC’s “The Rockford Files,” which aired from 1974 to 1980 and scored him an Emmy nomination.

The New York-born actor also had guest roles on such series as “Magnum, P.I.,” “Miami Vice” and “Hardcastle & McCormick.”

Santos most recently was seen in the 2015 film “Chronic.”

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.


Annual health and dental insurance enrollment period open now

 (Courtesy Washington Healthplanfinder)
Sponsored

2020 has been a stressful year for myriad reasons.