The actor, best known for playing Inspector Andrew Monroe in cop drama The Bill, is said to have been found at his home in Bristol, England with knife wounds in a suspected suicide, according to Britain's The People.
A statement from Tarrant's family confirms he died at the Bristol Royal Infirmary on Thursday (26Jan12).
Tarrant had starred in a number of theatre productions since leaving The Bill, which was cancelled in 2010 after 26 years on the air.
He performed in a U.K. tour of Calendar Girls and was expected to return to the production later this year (12).
West End theatre producer David Pugh has paid tribute to the star, saying, "Colin was a lovely man, he loved the theatre, his politics and his family. Our hearts must go out to his son Juma, his partner Sabrina and their baby son Louis."