New video shows what happened at Whiskey Row during Dallas Barrett's death

Dallas Barrett.jpeg
Posted at 1:24 PM, Nov 11, 2021

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Two new videos released to NewsChannel 5 show the moments before and after Dallas "DJ" Barrett died at Whiskey Row in August.

The witness watching what happened through a cell phone showed Barrett on the ground with at least four security personnel on top of him as music continued to play in the background. Throughout the nearly four minutes, others are trying to pull security off of Barrett, while the four security officers continue restraining him to the ground.

One passerby yelled Barrett couldn't breathe.

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Dallas Barrett 1

On Aug. 16, Metro police were called to Dierks Bentley's bar for a report of a fight. When officers arrived, they found 22-year-old Barrett unresponsive on the floor of the rooftop. Emergency personnel took Barrett to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, where they pronounced him dead. His death is now ruled a homicide, according to the medical examiner's office. The medical examiner determined his cause of death to be asphyxiation.

An additional video showed Barrett on the ground unresponsive. Then, Metro Nashville Police Department officers tried to use techniques to bring back Barrett's breathing.

DISCLAIMER: Graphic content below.

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Police said they received a complaint about the investigation through the Office of Professional Accountability from Whiskey Row. The complaint went through Hub Nashville, and wasn't received immediately, Metro officials said. People who work at the bar are claiming they asked for help from police on Broadway but they stayed at their post. Police say they were working traffic and radioed for help.

"If I were complaining about a lack of assistance, I would have filed that on Aug. 17 or 18," said Sarah Cripps, attorney for Barrett's mother.

Staff at the bar told detectives Barrett became unruly and was asked to leave, but he allegedly then began to fight with security staff. They said he was approached after pushing through the crowd.

"It made him look like something he’s not," his mother Tammy Barrett said.

Whiskey Row surveillance video from night Dallas Barrett died

"Based upon the information available to us at the time and the footage captured by our internal security video system, security staff appeared to try and de-escalate the chain of events that transpired that evening until Metro Police could arrive," Whiskey Row said in a statement Friday. "A life was lost, and others are suffering from emotional and physical scars. The Whiskey Row Nashville family hopes there will be healing for all involved."

Barrett's mother said she was astounded since people in the crowd told security her son couldn't breathe, yet security told others Barrett was breathing fine. His family is currently disputing the manner in which he died at the bar.

"The blood vessels burst in his eyes because the blood was de-oxygenated in his brain, that really got to me to know that,” Tammy Barrett said. "I knew my child suffered but to hear all that was going on inside, I hadn’t really thought about it, and now not only do I see him lying on the ground dead, but I can think about all that was going on at that time."

His mother's attorneys said charges should be filed.

"Did they handle the situation? Yes. Did they handle it well? They certainly did not," Cripps said.

In the long run, his mother wants stricter rules for security guards.

"There’s too much play that they have, and not enough penalties," she said.

On Saturday at 7 p.m., there will be a "Justice for Dallas Barrett" protest outside Whiskey Row, as it will be nearly three months since he died.