MIDWAY AIRPORT — Renowned Chicago rapper Juice WRLD died of an accidental overdose of oxycodone and codeine, the Cook County Medical Examiner ruled Wednesday.
Juice WRLD, whose legal name was Jarad Higgins, died December 8 at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn after experiencing cardiac arrest like symptoms upon arriving at Chicago’s Midway Airport.
Law enforcement officials were waiting at Midway for the rapper’s private plane to land, having received information from a federal task force that guns and drugs might be onboard. It was during a search of the plane and questioning of passengers that the rapper began convulsing, according to Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi.
Witnesses told TMZ that the rapper, who battled addiction to prescription drugs, swallowed Percocet pills in an attempt to hide them from the feds.
Federal agents administered Narcan on the scene, a drug used to revive people thought to be overdosing on opioids, and he was taken to Christ Hospital shortly after, Guglielmi said.
Confiscated from the Gulfstream Jet that flew from California were 70 pounds of marijuana found in 41 vacuum-sealed bags, six bottles of liquid prescription codeine cough syrup and three guns, including two 9mm pistols and a .40-caliber pistol, along with metal-piercing bullets and a high capacity ammunition magazine, Guglielmi said.
While no drug charges were filed, two men identified as security guards for the rapper, Christopher Long, 36 and Henry Dean, 27, were charged with misdemeanors for possessing guns and ammunition.
Long was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm and Dean, who had a permit to carry a gun in Illinois, was charged with carrying a concealed weapon at an airport and possessing the ammunition.
In the days after Juice WRLD’s death, fans of the rapper packed Chicago’s Millenium Park to pay tribute to the rapper, who many said tapped into their lives with his heartfelt lyrics.
“The impact he had on me, I can’t even describe,” said 22-year-old Jeremy Hill of Elgin. “I was in a dark place when I got into him and he helped me get over a heartbreak. He really gave voice to the voiceless. It’s like he was one of us.”