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Coroner: Bowman died of accidental overdose, enlarged heart

LOS ANGELES -- Former national figure skating champion
Christopher Bowman died from a drug overdose and an enlarged heart,
the coroner said Friday.

The 40-year-old Bowman was found dead inside a motel room in the
city's North Hills neighborhood on Jan. 10.

The two-time champion's blood-alcohol level was 0.12 percent,
said chief coroner's investigator Craig Harvey, and toxicology
tests also revealed cocaine, Valium and marijuana.

Also present was the prescription medicine Seroquel, which is
used to treat bipolar disorder, Harvey said.

The report said the death was accidental.

Harvey said Bowman's enlarged heart was not a condition he was
born with but developed over time. Substance abuse and weight gain
could have been factors.

The autopsy report said the 6-foot-1 Bowman weighed
261 pounds at death.

"There are a lot of factors that can contribute to an
enlargement of the heart," Harvey said. "It doesn't put you in a
better position, it puts you in a weaker position with what you put
in your body. It puts your heart in a precarious position."

An initial autopsy done two days after Bowman's death was not
conclusive, and police had said there was no sign of foul play or
illegal drug use in the motel room where Bowman was found.

A skating star in the 1980s and '90s known as "Bowman the
Showman," he had a reputation for excess that rivaled his talent.

Bowman battled drug problems and underwent treatment at least
twice -- once before the 1988 Olympics and again after the
Albertville Games in 1992. He was an admitted cocaine addict.

Along with the U.S. championships he won in 1989 and 1992,
Bowman also earned a silver medal at the 1989 world championships
and a bronze the next year. He was seventh at the 1988 Winter
Olympics and finished fourth in the 1992 Games.

A former child actor -- he had appeared on television's "Little
House on the Prairie"-- Bowman had recently come from Detroit to
Southern California to make a comeback in acting.