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Las Vegas bartender dies after ‘scuffle’ with intoxicated man

A bartender died Monday night following an altercation with an intoxicated man he refused to serve.

Police were called at 7:51 p.m. to Champagnes Cafe, 3557 S. Maryland Parkway, after a report of a battery and took one man to the hospital where he died, according to Metropolitan Police Department spokesperson Aden OcampoGomez.

The Clark County coroner’s office said Mark Heilman, 60, of Las Vegas, died at 8:34 p.m. at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center.

Champagnes owner Greg Sims said Heilman, who worked swing shift at the bar, refused to serve an intoxicated man. The man went behind the bar and got into a “scuffle” with Heilman.

“Nobody was injured,” Sims said. “But Mark had a bad heart, and almost immediately after it was over he had trouble breathing. From the time the guy walked in the door to the time the paramedics walked in the door was 20 minutes.”

The coroner’s office had not determined a cause and manner of death as of Wednesday afternoon.

Las Vegas police declined to provide further information Wednesday, citing an open investigation. No one has been arrested in connection with the death, as police are waiting for the coroner to rule on the case.

Sims said patrons often told him Heilman was a great person to have a conversation with. Heilman worked graveyard for many years before switching to swing shift recently.

“I’ve owned the place for over six years; he came with the bar,” Sims said, unsure how long Heilman had worked for Champagnes. “He’s not super outgoing, but you get him talking and he’ll entertain you for a while.”

Sims set up an online fundraiser Wednesday to help Lawrence, Heilman’s husband of more than 20 years, cover funeral expenses.

“Mark was the smartest of all of us, loved for his witty banter,” the post read.

Contact Sabrina Schnur at sschnur@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0278. Follow @sabrina_schnur on Twitter.

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