An autopsy has ruled that Chicago-born rapper Juice WRLD died of an accidental overdose of oxycodone and codeine, the Cook County medical examiner’s office said Wednesday.
Juice WRLD, born Jarad Anthony Higgins, died early Dec. 8, 2019 at Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn after suffering cardiac arrest at Midway Airport. He was 21.
Autopsy results were pending for weeks as investigators conducted additional tests.
A friend of Higgins told authorities the rapper ingested several Percocet pills prior to his death, possibly to conceal them from local and federal police officials at Midway, according to a police source.
Officers were called to the airport at 1:34 a.m. Dec. 8 to assist federal law enforcement with a private jet arriving at the airport which they suspected contained narcotics, Chicago police said.
According to police, Juice WRLD suffered a seizure during the search, and a Homeland Security officer administered a shot of Narcan, which is often used to reverse the effects of opioid overdoses.
On the jet, authorities found 41 bags believed to contain marijuana, six bottles of suspected liquid codeine and 70 pounds of marijuana.
So far, no one’s been charged with drug possession.
“No one has claimed ownership of the drugs, and I haven’t heard any updates,” CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said Wednesday. Federal prosecutors deferred the case to local law enforcement, he said.
However, two of Juice WRLD’s security guards were charged with unlawful gun possession after three handguns were found on the plane.
Juice WRLD was born in Chicago and raised in south suburban Homewood. He graduated in 2017 from Homewood-Flossmoor Community High School after gaining a reputation as a talented musician.
Drugs were a common theme of Juice WRLD’s music, with the artist often detailing his use of marijuana and prescription drugs, including the anti-anxiety medication Xanax.
In a 2018 interview with The New York Times, Juice WRLD claimed he had stopped taking Xanax and said he was trying to curtail his drug use.
“I smoke weed, and every now and then I slip up and do something that’s poor judgment,” he said in the interview. “I have a lot going for me, I recognize it’s a lot of big things, a lot of big looks. I want to be there, and you don’t have to overdose to not be there.”