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Life, Death and Aftermath timeline of

"Buffalo Jim" Barrier


1971 - Buffalo Jim Barrier moves from Cleveland, Ohio to Las Vegas, Nevada. 27


Early 1980’s - Opens Allstate Auto & Marine, on Industrial Road, west of the Las Vegas Strip. 27


1984 - Crazy Horse Too began operating under the management of Frederick “Rick” Rizzolo. 28


1990’s - Buffalo Jim and Rick Rizzolo feud begins.


2005 - Buffalo Jim begins receiving letters from a supposed insider that would state information regarding the Crazy Horse Too and notorious figures in Las Vegas at the time.  Buffalo would spread these letters around to family, friends, and his attorney, Gus Flangas.  Letters would continue to be sent intermittently up to the day before Buffalo’s death and eventually transitioned from merely presenting inside information about Rizzolo to a plot that was being put in place to end Buffalo’s life. 9, 26


2006 - The Crazy Horse Too is raided by the FBI.  For years, Buffalo Jim had been documenting wrong-doings he witnessed in the Crazy Horse Too parking lot and its front entrance.  Buffalo would forward pertinent information (including photographs) to the local FBI office. 3


2007 - Rick Rizzolo pleads guilty to tax evasion and goes to prison. 1


Easter Weekend 2008 (Two weeks prior to Buffalo Jim’s death) - A break-in takes place at Buffalo Jim’s auto body shop. 7

  • Buffalo alerted many people, including reporters at the Las Vegas Review Journal about the break-in. 5,7


Friday, April 4, 2008

  • Rick Rizzolo is formally released from Federal Custody. 10

  • Buffalo Jim reports receiving a threatening phone call from a “self-described hitman.” 7, 8

  • Buffalo called Las Vegas Weekly journalist, Joshua Longobardy, to discuss this suspicious phone call. 16


Saturday, April 5, 2008

  • At 7:20 pm, Buffalo Jim leaves his house at 435 Los Feliz Street, Las Vegas, NV 89110. 6

    • Tells his youngest daughter that he was meeting a friend and would be back by midnight. 6

  • According to Lisa’s voluntary statement to Metro police, Buffalo heads to pick her up at the Chevron gas station on Rancho Drive and Charleston Boulevard. 26

  • At 8:15 pm, the Motel 6 key card log states that Room 105 was accessed. 26

  • According to surveillance camera time stamps and a receipt, at 8:22 pm, Buffalo Jim checks into the Motel 6 at 4125 Boulder Highway, Las Vegas, NV 89121 and gets Room 105 for two. 26

  • Medical examiner, Lary Simms, who performed Buffalo's autopsy, states that Buffalo Jim passed away shortly after checking into his room. 9

    • The woman named “Lisa” that was with Buffalo Jim stated that she left the room when he went to the bathroom, then changed her statement with her having left the room after Buffalo had a seizure. 18,26

    • Not long after she left, Lisa called Buffalo’s cell phone, leaving a message asking if he was “okay.”  Lisa never called paramedics although she told detectives Buffalo “was a friend.” 15, 26


Sunday, April 6, 2008

  • After Buffalo Jim's body had been found by a maid, authorities were called at 1:30 pm and arrived at Room 105 around 2:30 pm. 8

  • Buffalo Jim was pronounced dead at 2:30 pm by a Coroner Investigator. 3, 8

  • Shortly after Buffalo was pronounced dead, his two youngest daughters were called and asked to come to Motel 6 to identify the body. 3,26

  • Upon arriving, Buffalo’s daughters were unable to locate his vehicle, a Rolls Royce. 8

  • Not long after the daughters left the Motel 6, the Rolls Royce was visibly found in the front parking lot near the front office. 10

  • Officials, while awaiting autopsy and toxicology reports to be conducted, state that Buffalo died of “natural causes.” 3

  • The Coroner’s office and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department performed their investigation under the belief that there was no foul play. 4

  • The room was clean with no signs of a struggle. 14

  • An expired pill bottle with several valium pills was located on the nightstand, however, no valiums were found in Buffalo’s stomach during the autopsy or listed in the toxicology report. 12

  • It was reported that there were two cups of water next to the bed. 15

  • Authorities never confirmed whether they had found signs of cocaine use in Buffalo’s vehicle or motel room, even after the statements about cocaine in Buffalo’s system had been reported. 26


Thursday, April 10, 2008

  • Buffalo’s family meets with the Clark County Coroner and Medical Examiner. 9

  • No drugs were reported to be found in Buffalo’s stomach and the preliminary report states there was no heart attack. 9

  • Family hired a private pathologist (Dr. Rexene Worrell) to perform an independent autopsy of Barrier’s body before the funeral on Saturday, April 12, 2008. 9


Barrier’s daughter, Jennifer, was promised by Detective Mark Harding of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department that a hair sample would be taken from Buffalo Jim Barrier’s body to test if Barrier had been doing drugs within the past several months prior to his death and that retrieval of the sample would take place before the funeral.


One week later, Jennifer checked with Detective Harding regarding the status of the hair sample and he stated to her that no sample was taken and he did not receive permission from the Clark County Coroner’s office to do so.


Dr. Worrell’s report was submitted to the Clark County Coroner and Medical Examiner, but it was not presented to Buffalo’s family. 26


Saturday, 12 April 2008

  • Funeral for Buffalo Jim Barrier. 10


Thursday, April 17, 2008 

  • Police spokesman, Captain Randy Montandon, states that he has viewed the surveillance footage of Buffalo Jim from the night he checked in and he “looked to be in good spirits.” 15


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

  • Clark County Coroner’s office reports that Buffalo Jim died of dilated cardiomyopathy brought about by cocaine use. 17, 18


Explanation of the difference from the preliminary report is explained by the Las Vegas Review Journal as:


“Simms’ preliminary report indicated there were no signs of a heart attack, fueling the family’s belief that Barrier died under suspicious circumstances...Murphy said that when an individual dies from a heart attack, the heart muscle is dead...Barrier had no dead muscles but had heart disease. In medical terms, he died from a heart disease combined with cocaine use, Murphy said, clarifying Simms’ findings.” 17


Thursday, June 26, 2008

  • Clark County Coroner’s office states that while there was GHB reported in Buffalo’s system, it was below the normal limit in people. 19


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

  • Clark County Coroner states that they will not exhume the body of Buffalo in order to conduct a hair analysis. 21



As of today, Buffalo Jim’s body has not been exhumed to perform the test and definitively prove whether he had been an avid drug user before his death.

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