Witnesses have shared with authorities that Chicago rapper Juice WRLD had been popping pills before his sudden death at Midway International Airport in Chicago, according to media reports. FBI agents also told the Chicago Tribune that dozens of bags of marijuana were confiscated from the private jet the rapper was aboard.
»MORE: Rapper Juice WRLD dies at 21
The entertainment news site reported Monday that federal agents found 70 pounds of marijuana on the aircraft that transported the 21-year-old rapper to the Chicago airport, where he suffered cardiac arrest Sunday morning. He was later pronounced dead at a Chicago hospital. Members of the “Lucid Dreams” rapper’s entourage reported that Juice WRLD, whose real name is Jarad A. Higgins, had taken “several unknown pills” before his death.
Officers and agents had been waiting at the Atlantic Aviation hangar at Midway early Sunday because they suspected the private plane from Los Angeles carrying the 21-year-old musician was carrying contraband, the sources told the Chicago Tribune. As they were going through two carts of luggage, the rapper "began convulsing (and) going into a seizure," sources said. An agent administered two doses of Narcan, an emergency treatment when opioid overdose is suspected.
Police asked his girlfriend Ally Lotti if he had any medical issues or had ingested any drugs. She replied that Higgins did not have any medical conditions, but that he "takes Percocet and has a drug problem." Percocet contains acetaminophen and oxycodone, an opioid.
The FBI has not provided comments on why agents were waiting for the plane. Logs show the plane flew from Fort Pierce, Florida to Van Nuys, California, on Saturday and then on to Midway, arriving there around 1:30 a.m. Juice WRLD was scheduled to play at the Rolling Loud Festival in Los Angeles this coming Saturday.
Other associates of the hip-hop star told TMZ that Higgins had developed a Percocet problem prior to his death. Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford said he suffered cardiac arrest before he was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital. Police said there were no signs of foul play in the death. The Cook County Medical Examiner's Office planned to conduct an autopsy on the rapper Monday.
Members of Juice WRLD’s team have been arrested
Two security guards who were with rapper Juice WRLD when he died after suffering a medical emergency at Chicago’s Midway International Airport have been arrested on gun charges. According to the Chicago Tribune, Harry Dean, 27, of Chicago, and Christopher Long, 36, who is from California, were charged with misdemeanor gun counts after police found three guns, a high-capacity magazine and metal-piercing bullets.
They are both due in court later this month. It wasn't immediately known if they had lawyers who would comment.
Juice WRLD, who was named top new artist at the 2019 Billboard Music Awards in May, lived in the Chicago suburb of Homewood. His hit song “Lucid Dreams” made it No. 9 on the Billboard charts. He had collaborated with Atlanta rapper Future on the collaboration mixtape “Wrld on Drugs.” Atlanta rapper Lil Yachty was one of many who paid tribute to Juice WLRD on Sunday.
Funeral arrangements have not been announced for the rapper.
In April, the Chicago lyricist, who was known for his freestyling, did an extensive interview with syndicated New York radio show “The Breakfast Club” about mental health, heartbreak and his music career.
Listen to the interview, which has explicit language, below.
The Associated Press and the Chicago Tribune contributed to this report.
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