Christopher Bowman, the former U.S. figure skating champion called "Bowman the Showman" for his flair on the ice, died Thursday of a possible drug overdose, authorities said. He was 40.

Bowman was pronounced dead at 12:06 p.m., said Coroner's Lt. Joe Bale, who wasn't immediately able to provide more details about the possible drug overdose.

Bowman's body was found at a motel in the North Hills section of Los Angeles, and an autopsy was planned for this weekend, Bale said.

Bowman, a former child actor, won U.S. men's figure skating titles in 1989 and 1992, and was a two-time medalist at the world championships. Bowman also competed in the 1988 and 1992 Winter Olympics, finishing seventh and fourth, respectively.

The skater also had some run-ins with the law.

In November 2004, he pleaded no contest to two misdemeanors involving having a gun while drunk in Rochester Hills, Mich.

In 1993, while skating with the Ice Capades, he was beaten at a hotel in a seedy neighborhood in Pittsburgh, according to a police report.

Born in Hollywood, Calif., on March 30, 1967, Bowman had a part in the TV series "Little House on the Prairie" for one season and appeared in dozens of commercials.

Recently, Bowman had returned to acting. He had a role an assistant coach in the upcoming Brian J. De Palma-directed movie "Down and Distance" staring Gary Busey.