Investigators and family of the former "Amazing Race" producer Jeff Rice, who was found dead in a Uganda hotel room last Friday, are waiting to learn more about what might have killed him -- a cocaine overdose or suspected poisoning -- from his assistant, who remains in critical condition in a Kampala hospital.
Rice's body was found at the luxury Serena hotel in the capital city of Kampala. His assistant, Katheryne Fuller, was found unconscious.
"Ms. Fuller is slowly recovering, and when she is recovered enough we will be able to talk to her and find out more about what happened," Uganda Police Force spokesman Asuman Mugenyi said. "She is not able to speak. Although she is responding to the treatment, she is not yet available to explain what transpired."
Police say hotel staff noticed a man hanging on a balcony last Friday, and when they went to the room they found the 39-year-old's body on the balcony and Fuller unconscious in the room. Staff called police and rushed the two to a hospital, where Rice was declared dead, police said.
Investigators initially believed Rice and Fuller may have been sickened by some type of food poisoning. Later Mugenyi denied reports that Rice had been poisoned after he rebuffed a shakedown attempt from local "thugs," although friends remain skeptical.
"I was shocked. Jeff was someone who was terrific at his job," Josh Gates, a friend of Rice's told ABC News. "I don't know exactly what to think about what happened to Jeff. I hear conflicting reports coming out of the region."
Ugandan police said they have now ruled out poisoning and said further testing found high-levels of cocaine in Rice's system. Sources said Rice and Fuller were working on an investigative documentary, and many fear they might have been targeted by locals.
"For him to pass away so young so suddenly is alarming, obviously, but also is surprising because he was someone who was really able to take care of himself in the field. He was excellent at what he did," Gates added.
Rice was a veteran producer who worked on the latest season of the hit reality series "The Amazing Race" and the Emmy-nominated Animal Planet series "Whale Wars." In addition to raising two young kids, Rice and his wife, Sally Blackman, operated a television and film production company called SB Productions in Durban, South Africa.
Katheryne Fuller's father Stuart Fuller confirmed Rice were shooting a documentary, and other crew members who were with them should know more about what sickened them. Stuart Fuller said he is now with his daughter at the hospital in Kampala.
"She is OK. We are trying to get her back to South Africa. She needs medical attention that they can't do here," he said.