Once renowned throughout the freeskiing world as “Psycho Nobi,” American skier Jeremy Nobis was found dead in a Cedar City, Utah jail cell Wednesday morning.
Nobis, 52, was an inmate at the Iron County Correctional Facility as a result of a 2019 drunk driving incident. After he was found unresponsive in his cell early on Wednesday, jail staff attempted life saving measures, according to a press release from the Iron County Critical Incident Task Force.
Nobis was pronounced dead at the jail, after which authorities notified his family, the press release said. The task force is carrying out an investigation into his death but does not expect foul play.
Nobis’ incarceration began last December, and stemmed from an August 2021 failure to appear to a videoconference call concerning his prior DUI arrest. In that incident, Nobis was involved in a rollover crash in which court records showed his blood alcohol level was 0.42 — eight times the Utah legal limit, per St. George News.
For Nobis, it was just one episode in what had become a downward spiral of driving under the influence that snowballed after his professional skiing career ended. Prior to the 2019 incident, Nobis was convicted of felony DUI in Utah in 2006 and in Wyoming in 2011, the Idaho Mountain Express reported. In each incident, his attempts to flee police led to car chases.
It unraveled for Nobis in Idaho, where he was reportedly working as a ski instructor at Sun Valley Resort. There, authorities caught up with him in conjunction with his outstanding warrants, and arrested him on Dec. 8, 2022.
Regardless of personal turmoil, Nobis was a natural in steep terrain. He first qualified for the U.S. Ski Team at age 16, then raced in the 1994 Olympics as a 23-year-old. But when he left the well-groomed pistes of the circuit behind for untamed big mountains, he began to author his reputation in earnest. The landmark: his 1997 descent of Alaska’s Pyramid Peak, a plunging slope reaching 52 degrees over 2,000 feet of vertical drop.
Famed for his freeriding and notorious for his wild lifestyle, “Psycho Nobi” now rests in peace.