It was reported this week that Peter Robbins, known to generations of kids as the voice of Charlie Brown, killed himself last week, aged 65.
His family declined to provide further details, but TMZ is reporting that Peter’s Agent, Dylan Novak, says that he checked himself into a mental hospital in California, shortly after Christmas. Novak says Peter was in a bad headspace, and the last time they spoke in Jan. Peter said: “I really need your prayers.”
The hospital staff allegedly encouraged Peter to stay there for a few more weeks, but Peter refused. instead, he discharged himself on Jan 18, 2022. He was found dead sometime after that.
via Daily Mail:
Robbins began his career as a child actor at nine years old and voiced the beloved Peanuts character in the perennial holiday classics A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965) and It’s A Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (1966).
The actor was a big fan of his character and even got a tattoo of Charlie Brown and his trusty sidekick Snoopy.
Robbins, born Louis Nanasi to Hungarian parents in Los Angeles in 1956, began his acting career at the age of 7. That year, he was cast to play the title character in the TV documentary ‘A Boy Named Charlie Brown.‘
He aged out of voicing Charlie Brown aged 14, but the character’s trademark scream of frustration, ‘AAUGH!’, is still used in each Charlie Brown animated special.
Robbins also appeared on episodes of The Munsters, Rawhide, F Troop, Get Smart and My Three Sons before he quit acting in 1972.
In later years, his mental health issues led to several brushes with the law.
In 2013, the then-56-year-old actor was arrested at the US Mexico border and charged for stalking his ex-girlfriend and the plastic surgeon who he’d paid to give her breast enhancement. Prosecutors said that he’d called his ex more than 37 times in a 24-hour period, threatening to kill her and her son if she did not return his car and dog, whom he named Snoopy.
On New Year’s Eve 2013, prosecutors said, Robbins confronted his ex-girlfriend in a hotel room, beating his dog and telling her that he would not stop harming the animal and would kill her if she did not get a refund for her plastic surgery. Before fleeing, he grabbed the woman by her neck and slammed her into a wall.
Robbins pleaded guilty to two counts of stalking and ten counts of making criminal threats in April 2013, and openly cried in court as his sentence was handed down.
Sentencing him to one year in county jail and five years on probation, a San Diego judge borrowed a line from Peanuts to warn Robbins of the consequences of violating his terms.
‘If I can borrow a line from ‘Peanuts,’ sir, I’m going to grant probation. If you adhere to those terms, you won’t go to prison. So, don’t be a blockhead.’
In 2015, though, he threatened to harm a mobile home park manager and San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore, offering $50,000 to have Gore killed. He pleaded guilty and was sent to prison for nearly five years. The actor said his poor mental health got him transferred from the California Institution for Men in Chino to a state mental hospital in Atascadero, California before he was released in 2019.
He continued down his troubled path for the next few years, you can read more about that here.
His family is now asking for privacy and said they will hold a memorial service for him at a future date.
If you or a loved one are struggling with suicidal thoughts, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.