Las Vegas Sun

April 19, 2019

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Buffalo Jim death ruled accidental; cocaine contributed to death

(First posted at 11:35 a.m., Tuesday, May 27.)

Clark County Coroner Mike Murphy this morning ruled the death of "Buffalo" Jim Barrier an accident.

Murphy said Barrier died of dilated cardiomyopathy which, according to the American Heart Association, is a disease of the heart muscle that causes the heart to become enlarged and weakened.

Toxicology tests found cocaine in the 55-year-old Barrier's body, and cocaine intoxication was listed as a "contributing condition" to his heart problem, Murphy said.

"There is no indication of foul play at this time," Murphy said.

Barrier was a colorful auto mechanic and wrestling promoter, a character familiar on the Las Vegas scene for decades.

Metro Police had earlier gathered evidence that they said appeared to dispel Barrier's family and close friends' suspicions that Barrier had been murdered.

Barrier's body was found April 6 in a motel room on Boulder Highway. He was face up with his pants around his ankles.

A woman who was with Barrier at the motel room the night before told police he appeared to have suffered a seizure.

The woman, who police declined to identify, told detectives that she had carried on a social relationship with Barrier for a decade.

Prior to his death, Barrier had a long-running feud with former Crazy Horse Too owner Rick Rizzolo.

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