West Virginia police have just confirmed what TMZ reported yesterday ... "Buckwild" star Shain Gandee died from carbon monoxide poisoning.
A rep for the Kanawha County Sheriff's Office released a statement saying Shain's autopsy was completed today. The death was ruled an accident.
Shain's uncle and a male friend also died while inside Shain's 1984 Bronco, which had stalled out in mud while the crew went off-roading over the weekend. The truck's exhaust pipe had apparently been submerged in mud, causing the gas to leak back into the car.
As we previously reported ... the 21-year-old reality show star as well as the two others were found dead yesterday morning by a passing ATV rider.
Shain Gandee did not get rich during his brief stint as an MTV reality star -- far from it -- so his family is turning to his community to help pay for funeral expenses ... TMZ has learned.
Shain's cousin, Ashley Gandee, is organizing a memorial "mud run" (an off-road trucking event) to ease the financial strain on Shain's family in the wake of the "Buckwild" star's death.
"I know the strain they are going through," Ashley tells us ... adding, "It's hard to provide a proper burial. It's already tough with the loss of family members ... expenses are tough as well."
FYI -- Ashley was with Shain at the opening of her shop Gandee's General Store in Crown City, Ohio on Saturday ... two days before he was found dead.
Ashley tells us the "mud run" event will take place Wednesday night in Proctorville, Ohio -- a town about 50 miles from Charleston, West Virginia where "Buckwild" is filmed.
We're told there will be a $10 charge for each vehicle -- Ashley's store will also be taking donations.
It's unclear how much dough Shain made during his career on the MTV show -- but as we learned from the "Jersey Shore" situation, the stars don't usually see a big pay day until AFTER the show becomes a hit. It's safe to say Shain was probably making a couple thousand dollars at best.
As we previously reported ... Shain was found dead in his Ford Bronco Monday in West Virginia -- along with his uncle and a male friend -- after the vehicle was submerged in mud. Carbon Monoxide poisoning may have been the cause.
2:38 PM PT -- TMZ has learned ... the bodies of all 3 victims have been recovered from the scene and have been transferred to the local medical examiner's office where autopsies will be performed.
2:29 PM PT -- Officials have retrieved Shain's red Ford Bronco from the muddy pit where it was discovered ... and judging by pictures of the car taken at the scene, it appears the vehicle was submerged past the window.
The photos seem to support the theory that the passengers died from carbon monoxide poisoning because the deadly fumes from the car could not escape through the tailpipe, which was completely submerged in the mud.
There is evidence that "Buckwild" star Shain Gandee may have died from carbon monoxide poisoning ... sources close to the death investigation tell TMZ.
A rep for the Kanawha County Sheriff's Office in West Virginia tells us, the bodies of Shain, his uncle David Gandee, and a third unidentified person are still inside the truck where they were originally found. Authorities have been unable to remove the bodies from the scene because of the truck's location.
According to the rep, Shain's 1984 Bronco is stuck knee-deep in mud in the middle of nowhere ... and the only way to reach it is via an all-terrain vehicle.
We're told there is no cell reception in the area, which is why Shain and the others couldn't be reached. We're also told the bodies were originally discovered today by a passing ATV rider.
Police wouldn't confirm or deny whether carbon monoxide poisoning played a role in the deaths -- but sources connected with the investigation say it's the likely scenario, especially if the exhaust pipe was submerged in mud.
The Mayor of Charleston, West Virginia -- where "Buckwild" is filmed -- says he hopes MTV will pull the plug on the controversial show after one of its stars, Shain Gandee, was found dead today.
Mayor Danny Jones tells TMZ ... “Of the few cast members on the show already two have had legal issues and now one has died. The show only enhances the negative stereotype the Kanawha Valley already has. I hope the show’s life is short.”
The show has been surrounded by controversy from the beginning ... you'll recall, back in December WV Senator Joe Manchin blasted the show as a "travesty" that profits off of shameful behavior and urged MTV to cancel it even before it aired.
Adding to the problem ... two "Buckwild" cast members were recently arrested for separate incidents -- Salwa Amin and Michael Burford. Amin in connection with a drug raid and Burford on suspicion of DUI.
As TMZ previously reported ... 21-year-old cast member Shain Gandee was found dead earlier this morning -- along with his uncle and one unidentified passenger -- inside a Ford Bronco, in Sissonville, WV.
1:00 PM PT -- Sources close to the death investigation say it's likely Shain died from carbon monoxide poisoning.
"Buckwild" Star Shain Gandee was found dead in a vehicle in West Virginia this morning ... 31 hours after the 21-year-old MTV reality star had been reported missing, this according to law enforcement.
According to officials, Gandee, his 48-year-old uncle David Gandee, and a third unidentified body were discovered dead in the vehicle in Sissonville, West Virginia. There was no sign of foul play.
As we previously reported ... Shain was last heard from around 3 AM on Sunday morning, when he and his uncle David told people they planned to go 4-wheeling.
MTV has released a statement, saying, "We are shocked and saddened by the terrible news about Shain Gandee, and those involved in this tragic incident. We are waiting for more information but at this time, our main concern is for the Gandee family and their friends."
MTV adds, "Our thoughts and prayers are with them. Shain had a magnetic personality, with a passion for life that touched everyone he met and we will miss him dearly."
The rep says production of "Buckwild" has since been suspended.
Story developing ...
9:40 AM PT -- Shain has been found dead inside his car along with two other bodies, this according to law enforcement. It's unclear if one of the other bodies is Shain's uncle.
"Buckwild" star Shain Gandee has been reported missing after going on an off-roading trip with his uncle ... and never coming home.
The Kanawha County Sheriff's Office in West Virginia just issued a press release, claiming the MTV reality star and his uncle David Gandee were reported missing last night, roughly 24 hours after they were last seen at a Sissonville bar.
According to cops, 21-year-old Shain and 48-year-old David had told people at the bar they were planning to go four-wheeling ... but didn't tell anyone where they planned to ride. They haven't been seen or heard from since.
At the time of the police press release, Shain and his uncle had been missing 31 hours. They were last known to be in Shain’s car, a red and white 1984 Ford Bronco with oversized tires.
Salwa’s attorney tells TMZ, Salwa was arrested on a warrant for a failed court-ordered urine drug test. The test came back positive for oxycodone and morphine. She did not miss a court date.
Her next court date is April 8th for a bond hearing.
"Buckwild" star Salwa Amin has been arrested for the SECOND TIME in connection with a West Virginia drug raid last month ... a raid that turned up oxy pills and heroin ... TMZ has learned.
Amin was hauled in today on a bench warrant, which was issued after she allegedly blew off a court date stemming from the first arrest.
TMZ broke the story ... Amin was arrested the first time for drug possession following the February raid, which took place at Amin's friend's house. Amin and another friend were accused of transporting oxycodone and heroin to the house in order to sell the stuff.
She was booked on two counts of drug possession with intent to deliver ... felonies.
Now that she's been arrested again, Amin remains in custody without bail. A new court date has yet to be scheduled.
The cast of MTV's "Buckwild" racked up another arrest ... this time it's Michael Burford who was busted for DUI.
TMZ confirmed Burford, who goes by "Bluefoot" on the reality show, was arrested around 3AM Friday morning in Charleston, WV.
Police say Burford was pulled over for speeding and appeared to be drinking. Officers say he failed a field sobriety test and had a blood alcohol level greater than .15 -- which makes it an aggravated DUI case under West Virginia law.
Salwa Amin, also from "Buckwild," was busted last weekend for drug possession with intent to deliver.
The "Buckwild" star who was busted in a drug raid was cowering in a shed when the you-know-what hit the fan, and cops allegedly hauled in a bunch of drugs and money ... TMZ has learned.
The Police Chief in Summersville, West Virginia tells us officers arrested Salwa Amin and 2 other men after an extensive day of surveillance.
According to the chief, his drug task force got a tip that a "shipment" would be delivered to the home in Nicholas County sometime on Sunday.
The chief says they observed a lot of foot traffic coming in and out of the house -- and says the people were only staying for very brief periods of time ... so they immediately obtained a search warrant, and then launched the raid.
Salwa, Shawn L. Booker and Jason D. Jones -- who owns the home -- were found hiding in a shed in the backyard, according to the chief.
We're told Salwa had a "quantity of Oxycodone" in her purse -- and Booker had a "large amount of money" on him.
Additionally, police say they found 3 separate packages of heroin in the shed. They were unclear about a specific quantity of the drugs.
According to police, Jones rolled over on Salwa and Booker ... claiming they transported the drugs to his house with intent to distribute.
Neither Booker or Jones appear on the MTV reality show "Buckwild."
8:15 AM PT -- According to the Nicholas County Magistrate Court, Salwa Amin will post $200,000 bond for two counts of drug possession with intent to deliver. One count for oxycodone, the other for HEROIN.
Salwa Amin -- one of the stars of the MTV show "Buckwild" -- was arrested early this morning on a felony drug charge in West Virginia.
Amin was popped for drug possession with intent to deliver -- a felony. She's scheduled to be arraigned later this morning.
Just last week, MTV announced it was going forward with a second season of the show ... which is best described as a redneck version of "Jersey Shore."
They're both reality shows on MTV that feature a subculture of America doing crazy things on camera and bringing notoriety to their region ... but the stars of the new show "Buckwild" say they're nothing like their "Jersey Shore" counterparts.
Our photog caught up with two of the show's stars, Shain Gandee and Shae Bradley, yesterday in NYC ... fresh off the premiere of their show, which is set in the backwoods of West Virgina.
When our photog asked how "Buckwild" compares to the now-complete "Jersey Shore" ... Shae was quick to kill any comparison: "We don't [compare]. They're both reality shows. We're both just living our lives, but they're not alike at all."
Seeing as the majority of the cast of "JS" made millions off their sudden fame ... perhaps Shae should re-consider.