MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) — For a while, Barret Robbins was well on his way to live a life full of fame and fortune. The 6’3″, 320-pound former NFL star was set to play in the Super Bowl in 2003. However, he never got on the field.
Instead, a series of run-ins with drugs and cops eventually landed him in jail.
Now, Robbins is known as inmate number M56276 at the Dade Correctional Institute, a state run prison, in Florida City, where he has been for the past year and a half.
The reason for his stay in prison can be traced back to January 15, 2005 when Robbins shot at Miami Beach Det. Mike Muley in a struggle that nearly killed him at the Playwright Irish Pub on the 1200 block of Washington Avenue.
CBS4’s Gary Nelson recently sat down with Det. Muley in his first televised interview and asked: “You shot him at darn near point blank range?”
Muley, ” Yes. ”
Nelson: “In the chest? ”
Muley, “Yes, sir. ” And he said what?
“Now, I’m going to kill you,” Muley said recalling Robbins’ words.
Det. Muley described the life and death struggle that he and two other cops had with a man who appeared to be a raging bull – Barret Robbins.
Robbins, a Houston native, was once the starting center for the Oakland Raiders and expected to play in the Super Bowl against Tampa Bay in 2003. He disappeared days before the big game.
“I ended up losing my mind and I got to Mexico and was in Mexico missing the Super Bowl,” Robbins said in a taped deposition.
His NFL career soon collapsed. While his Oakland Raiders lost the game to Tampa Bay, Robbins’ mind had been clouded by drugs and alcohol and when the effects wore off he didn’t think the game had been played yet.
Robbins fumbled his career and family away, never having met a drink or illegal drug he didn’t like.
“The first time I was arrested was in Austin, Texas,” Robbins said in a deposition.
More arrests would follow and eventually Robbins found himself on South Beach in January of 2005. Police were responding to emergency calls about a commercial building burglary.
He barged into the Playwright Irish Pub, pushed past the cook and manager and headed to the office upstairs. Police found him hiding in a women’s room.
When he stood up, he matched the description exactly. He was a big guy, a very big guy.
At 6’3″, 320 pounds, Robbins lit into Officer Colin Pfrogner, a motorcycle cop.
“He turned very quickly, charged officer Pfrogner, grabbing him, beating him, driving him down the wall,” Muley said.
Into the wall with such force that it cracked the officer’s motorcycle helmet; the beating continued.
“We were trying to get him off him. We were hitting him, kicking him, screaming at him trying to get him to stop and he didn’t,” Muley said.
When Pfrogner was beaten unconscious, Robbins turned to Officer Mark Schoenfeld “and picked him up and slammed him on the ground,” Muley said.
Schoenfeld received a broken shoulder, busted teeth, was knocked out. Then, Robbins went at Muley.
“Grabs me by the face with his hand, as he charged at me, and smashes me into the wall,” Muley said. “I had my firearm out, I pointed it at him. He was grabbing my forearms, holding my forearms, trying to pull it away. And I just started firing the gun.”
He fired five times. Three slugs hit the hallway and office walls, two hit Robbins.
“He didn’t fall down. I was kind of surprised. He just kind of bent over, put his elbows on his knees, and told me he was gonna kill me,” Muley said.
“You have shot him twice, once through the heart, and what happens?” Gary Nelson asked.
“He didn’t fall down like I thought he would,” Muley said adding that Robbins continued to threaten him saying, “Now, I’m going to kill you.”
Robbins knocked the cop’s gun away and knocked the cop out cold. Robbins collapsed and incredibly survived the shot to the heart.
Robbins plead bi-polar disorder. In the end, three counts of attempted murder were bargained down to a stint in a treatment program and probation.
Police were livid about that, and even more livid when Robbins filed this civil rights lawsuit against them, claiming they used “excessive force” and that he was the victim of an “unwarranted assault and battery.”
Robbins described the events this way: “I remember just running into them and pushing them and getting shot.”
The lawsuit was a loser, and so was Robbins, finally sentenced to prison after repeatedly violating probation.
It’s a confrontation Det. Muley will never forget. “Knowing that there was nothing you could do to stop him, nothing you could do to stop him. Not even shoot him. It didn’t stop him.”
Robbins is scheduled to be released form a state prison in Miami-Dade in September. He declined to be interviewed for this report. His attorney said that Robbins plans to move on and live his life in peace.