Stanford officer fatally hits pedestrian late Thursday

Howard "Robert" Robbins

STANFORD, Ky. (WKYT) - CRAB ORCHARD, Ky. (WKYT) - Rick Spoonamore never thought the phone conversation he had Thursday night would be the last time he would talk to the man that he says was like a father to him.

“He called me last night about 9:21…said he was going to a friend’s house across the road. And then I heard about the accident,” said Spoonamore.

Howard “Robert” Robbins, 69, never made it across that road. About ten minutes later as Stanford officer Travis Richardson was on his way in to start his night shift, the veteran cop’s cruiser collided with Robbins.

“I seen his hat laying upside down in the road. I knew it was him. Just broke my heart. He was so good of a friend of mine,” said Spoonamore.

Officials say at this point they believe this was nothing more than an accident. Officer Richardson was with the Stanford force for four years. He’s been a veteran officer for eleven years.

State police, who are investigating, say Richardson called for help immediately and even tried to help Robbins himself with first aid, but Robbins died later at the Stanford hospital.

Neighbors say Robbins’ hearing and eyesight was affected by a recent stroke.

“And that changed him,” said neighbor Tammy Lamb. “We came to really like him. He would come up here and have coffee,” she said.

But Spoonamore says what he’ll miss the most was the mentoring and life lessons his friend left with him.

“He was a real believer in God. He would tell you things, what to do, not to do. Teach you the right things, you know. I’m going to miss that,” he said.

Funeral services for Robbins have been set for 1 o’clock Wednesday at McKnight Funeral Home in Crab Orchard. Visitation will take place at 5pm Tuesday.

You can read the full obituary here:

Stanford police say Richardson has been placed on administrative leave while the incident is investigated.

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