Born in Brooklyn, Joe Santos starred as Detective Dennis Becker in "The Rockford Files" during its six-year run, starting in 1974. Previously, he attended Forham University, where he played football, then transferred to Miami University. He worked in numerous off-Broadway roles before being cast as a detective in Al Pacino's movie, "Panic in Needle Park." Roles followed in "The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight," "Shamus" and "Sandy's Bride. "
His big break came when he was cast as a sergeant in "The Blue Knight," the TV miniseries starring William Holden. He had parts in over a dozen more feature films, as well as many television series, including a role on "The Sopranos," playing Consigliere Angelo Garepe.
A father of three, Santos passed away in 2016, at age 84.