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Emily Welker, Published May 10 2013

Fargo police investigate death of man outside Northern strip club

FARGO – Police here are investigating the death of a man who died this week after hitting his head in a scuffle with an employee at a strip club last month.

Deputy Chief Pat Claus said Friday that police were called for a medical assist at 10:50 p.m. April 13 at the Northern Gentleman’s Club at 325 10th St. N.

Officers found 38-year-old Christopher Barr of Devils Lake, who Claus said was alert and conscious. Claus said Barr – who had been kicked out of the club, staff would later tell police – was uncooperative with officers and wouldn’t tell them what led to the injury.

Barr was taken by ambulance to Sanford Medical Center.

Claus said police were notified on May 3 that Barr was still hospitalized, and his condition was deteriorating. At that point the case was assigned to a detective for review. Claus said Barr died Tuesday, and his body was sent to the North Dakota State Medical Examiner for an autopsy.

Police haven’t received the results of the autopsy, the deputy chief said. Initial results from an autopsy generally take about a week to receive, Claus has said.

Claus said employees at the Northern told police that Barr had been disruptive and was escorted out.

Club staff reported that Barr left for a time, then returned, and confronted an employee who was outside in the parking lot. The employee claimed to have pushed Barr in self-defense, after which he fell and hit his head.

No report was taken at the time, Claus said, because Barr was unwilling to cooperate with police.

Claus said the case is being treated as an unattended death, and that police are working to determine the means and manner of death, as well as whether there are any allegations of a crime having been committed.

The deputy chief urged anyone with “independent observations” of the incident to call the police.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Emily Welker at (701) 241-5541