Dark, intelligent yet outdoorsy actress with a warm, ready smile, best known for portraying Cay Rivvers, the young lesbian who helps Helen Shaver to blossom emotionally in "Desert Hearts" (1985). Patricia Charbonneau began on the New York stage in a production of "Revengers...A Tragedea," at Playwrights Horizons. She then went to Louisville, Kentucky, where she was a member of the Actors Theatre of Louisville. While there she originated the role of Lea in "My Sister in this House," a part she played Off-Broadway as well. Charbonneau had not worked on film at all when Donna Deitch cast her in "Desert Hearts, and followed that up with the cops 'n robber melodrama, "Manhunter" (1986). She was Anna, the lead, in "Call Me" (1988), a reporter who begins getting obscene phone calls and almost likes them. TV has provided steadier work. She appeared on the short-lived series "Crime Story" as Inga, the woman Dennis Farina is bedding (1986-87). At the same time, she co-starred in "C.A.T. Squad," which is more recalled as William Friedkin's return to TV directing. Other TV movies include "Disaster at Silo 7" (1988). In 1989, she was in the most well-publicized story cycle of "Wiseguy" playing Ron Silver's wife and Jerry Lewis' daughter-in-law in a storyline about mob influence in the garment industry, and in 1995, Charbonneau was back on series TV as the sheriff of a town out of which James Brolin's search and rescue team operates on "Extreme."