On 5th February 1936 he was accepted by Essex County Constabulary and, having completed training at Headquarters, he was posted to Brentwood from 21st March 1936. He subsequently saw service at Hadleigh from 5th September 1936, Canvey Island from 5th April 1937 and Great Waltham from 5th December 1938. Three weeks later he married Muriel Vera M. Curry, of Leigh-on-Sea.
Robert was recalled to the army on 1st December 1939. He died on Monday, 24th July 1944, whilst serving as Warrant Officer Class II 781971 CSM with Corps of Military Police. He was aged 32. He was buried in grave 7. D. 3. at the Karachi War Cemetery in Pakistan.