UPDATE #1 (Dec. 9 — 9:19pm ET): The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office told HollywoodLife that they have determined that “additional studies are required to establish the cause and manner of death for 21-year-old Jarad A. Higgins. Additional studies include cardiac pathology, neuropathology, toxicology and histology. The cause and manner of death are pending at this time. The Office will release a statement when cause and manner of death are determined.”
ORIGINAL STORY: Police were in the middle of searching Juice Wrld‘s private jet for drugs and firearms when he suffered a convulsive seizure and went into cardiac arrest on December 8, according to the Chicago Tribune. According to law enforcement sources who spoke to the paper, police were waiting for the rapper’s plane to arrive at Chicago Midway Airport from Los Angeles, as they suspected contraband was on board. While searching through luggage, Juice “began convulsing and going into a seizure,” the police sources said.
The 21-year-old “Lucid Dreams” rapper (real name Jarad Anthony Higgins) briefly woke up after an agent administered two doses of Narcan, an emergency medication administered for suspected opioid overdose, but was “incoherent,” according to the report. Paramedics rushed the rapper to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, Illinois, where he was pronounced dead at 3:14am local time. His cause of death is unknown; the Cook County medical examiner is conducting an autopsy on Monday, December 9.
Police reportedly asked Juice’s girlfriend, Ally Lotti, who was on the jet with the rapper and his bodyguards, if he had any medical condition, or was on drugs. She replied, according to the law enforcement sources that spoke to Chicago Tribune, that Juice didn’t have medical issues, but that he allegedly “takes Percocet and has a drug problem.” Percocet is a prescription painkiller that contains a combination of the medicines acetaminophen and oxycodone; additional law enforcement sources told TMZ that members of his entourage who were aboard the flight claimed that Juice had ingested “several unknown pills” before suffering the seizure in the private jet terminal at the airport.
HollywoodLife reached out to the FBI, who declined to comment on this allegation, or the report that agents recovered 41 “vacuum-sealed” bags of marijuana hidden in suitcases, and six bottles of prescription codeine cough syrup on the plane. Two 9 mm pistols, a .40-caliber pistol, a high-capacity ammunition magazine and metal-piercing bullets were also recovered from the plane, law enforcement sources told the Chicago Tribune. Chicago police confirmed to HollywoodLife that Juice’s bodyguards, Christopher Long, 36, and Henry Dean, 27, were arrested on misdemeanor gun charges.
Long was charged with one count of misdemeanor possession and carrying a firearm. Dean was charged with and two misdemeanor counts of carrying a concealed firearm, and one count of carrying high capacity magazine and metal piercing bullets. No drug charges have been filed at this time.
Juice and his entourage arrived at Chicago Midway from Los Angeles around 1:00am local time on December 8. Witnesses at the airport told TMZ that the rapper suffered the seizure while he was walking through the private jet terminal at the airport. Juice was bleeding from the mouth when paramedics arrived on the scene; he was still conscious while they rushed him to the hospital, but unresponsive, according to law enforcement. The rapper was in Chicago to celebrate his 21st birthday party, according to local news station Fox 32.