All The Facts, Rumors And Fictions About Juice Wrld's Tragic Death At 21

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All The Facts, Rumors And Fictions About Juice Wrld's Tragic Death At 21

How did Juice Wrld die? That's been the question on everybody's mind since word got out that the rapper had died in Chicago at just 21 years old in December 2019.

While he's not the first person in hip hop to die at such a young age, his is a death that could have been completely prevented. And while there has been no shortage of rumors surrounding his death — to say nothing of the myriad conspiracy theories — Juice Wrld's cause of death was finally revealed in January 2020.

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Born Jarad Anthony Higgins in Chicago, Illinois, Juice Wrld was a rapper that first came to prominence after his studio album, Death Race for Love, hit No. 1 on the Billboard charts. He first started making waves on the independent hip hop scene with the release of a collaborative album with rapper Future in 2018, but it was his debut album, Goodbye & Good Riddance, that ultimately got him a fanbase of his own.

He was signed to Interscope Records and quickly became popular amongst both fans of the genre and of other celebrities (like Ellie Goulding, who released a song with him called "Hate Me" and called him a "sweet soul" when he'd passed) — and there was an outpouring of grief from celebrities after his passing, in the form of tweets, posts, and tributes when word of Juice Wrld's passing became public. 

Now that he's gone, let's look at what we know about the death of Juice Wrld, as well as separating the fact from fiction. 

1. Despite his young age, Juice Wrld had already started receiving accolades in the hip hop world.

It's very difficult to get your "props" in the hip hop world when you're just starting out. But Juice Wrld wasn't an ordinary rapper. When Death Race for Love hit No. 1 on the Billboard charts, hip hop editor Carl Lamarre sat down with him to discuss his sudden spate of success, which included comparisons to Michael Jackson.

Wrld told Lamarre that while he appreciated it when people appreciated his work, he was a bit taken aback by the comparison to a pop legend. "People was hitting me up about it and I don't put no labels on myself, so I don't have any opinion on what he said. Like I have no opinion on it whether I think it's true or not, but he should have let me know because people were hitting my phone like, 'Oh, you're Michael Jackson.' It was funny," he said.

So, he was definitely someone who had a good career ahead of him, which makes his death even more tragic. 



A post shared by FaZe Boat (@lilyachty) on Dec 8, 2019 at 7:28am PST

2. Initial reports of Juice Wrld's death suggested he suffered a "medical emergency."

When information about a death is first released, it's understandable that not all facts are revealed at the time of the announcement. And the death of Juice Wrld was no different.

When word of his death was first released, initial reports merely stated that he had suffered a "medical emergency"' at Chicago's Midway Airport. 

3. The medical examiner immediately ordered an autopsy.

When Juice Wrld was pronounced dead at 3:14 AM on December 8, 2019, at the Advocate Christ Medical Center in Chicago, the medical examiner immediately ordered an autopsy to determine the cause of death. According to reports, the autopsy was performed on Monday, December 9, 2019

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4. Did he battle with prescription drug addiction?

In a tweet dated July 2019 — which was five months before he passed away — Juice Wrld admitted that he was "tweaking" (or, getting high) in a public apology to his girlfriend. He also said that "addiction kills all," which led people to believe that his addiction to prescription drugs may have been a contributory factor in his death. 

5. Many believed there was more to the story. 

Just a few hours after Juice Wrld went into convulsions, two of his security guards — Christopher Long and Henry Dean — were arrested. However, they weren't arrested in connection with his death or on any narcotics charges.

However, this naturally made people wonder if, in fact, there was more to the story than what meets the eye. 

6. There were many conflicting reports of Juice Wrld's death.

This is where, sometimes, it's important to remember that initial reports and later reports can be drastically different. When it was first announced that Juice Wrld passed away, some reports suggested that he'd died of a seizure. However, another report suggested that he'd died of cardiac arrest

What's more, still another report suggested that an extreme amount of drugs were found on the private jet that was carrying Juice Wrld and his entourage at the time of his death, leaving open speculation that drugs played a role in his passing. 

What was clear, however, was that there was no evidence of foul play in Juice Wrld's death. 

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His last moments of life were captured on video and shared by DJ Akademiks, and his death sent shockwaves through the musical community.

7. How did Juice Wrld die? The cause of death was revealed to be an accidental drug overdose.

In January 2020, the rumors and speculation surrounding the famous rapper's death finally ended as his official cause of death was determined to be an accidental drug overdose. The Cooke County Medical Examiner confirmed the death to be an "accident." 

The medical examiner revealed, “The Office determined that Higgins died as a result of oxycodone and codeine toxicity.”

The rapper had been planning to celebrate his 21st birthday in Chicago with his friends and security team. However, the pilot of his private jet had revealed to authorities that the group had been carrying drugs and weapons with them. The rapper reportedly took a number of Percocet painkillers before landing after he found out that police would be searching their bags. 

While his bags were searched, Juice Wrld began convulsing and an agent was said to have revived him, but after being rushed to the hospital, he was pronounced dead an hour later.

Police found many different kinds of drugs and weapons in the luggage and the rapper's security guards were arrested at the airport after it was determined that they were the ones in possession of the weapons found in the bags. 

Our thoughts are with Juice Wrld's family during what is and has been, undoubtedly, a difficult time. 

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, and photographer whose work has appeared in Teen Vogue, People, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post,, and more.