Chris Kelly of the rap group “Kris Kross” has died, according to the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office. Police say they are investigating his death as a possible drug overdose.
In a police report obtained by FOX 5’s Chris Shaw, a witness said the rapper had been doing cocaine and heroin Tuesday night into Wednesday, and that Kelly passed out at 3 p.m. The witness told police that she took him home to sober up, and had done the same thing several times before.
The report also says Kelly’s uncle told police that the rapper had an extensive drug history.
Kelly, 34, was known as “Mac Daddy” in the group, which was best known for the 1992 song “Jump.”
He was found unresponsive at a home on Stone Leigh Drive around 4:30 p.m. Paramedics performed CPR on him and transported him to Atlanta Medical Center’s south campus, where he was pronounced dead at 5:33 p.m.
“The family is trying to get beyond what has happened and we’ve lost him. That’s basically where we’re at right now,” said Kelly’s former manager, Mike Mauldin.
An autopsy to determine the cause of death is to be performed on Thursday.
“We just want to thank everybody for all the well wishes and everything that’s coming in right now,” said Mauldin.
Kelly and Chris “Daddy Mac” Smith were discovered by Jermaine Dupri. Their first album, Totally Krossed Out, sold more than 4 million copies, according to Billboard magazine, making the boys national stars at the age of 14. They were known for wearing their pants backwards.
After three albums, the two pursued solo careers. They recently reunited So So Def’s 20th Anniversary concert. After that appearance, the duo was thinking of a relaunch.
“We’re going to miss him. He was a young man. Had a lot left. We were blessed to have him,” said Mauldin.
Kelly’s mother, Donna Kelly Pratte, and So So Def issued a statement saying:
“It is with deep sadness that we announce that our beloved Chris Kelly has passed away on May 1. To millions of fans worldwide, he was the trendsetting, backwards pants-wearing one-half of Kris Kross who loved making music. But to us, he was just Chris – the kind, generous and fun-loving life of the party. Though he was only with us a short time, we feel blessed to have been able to share some incredible moments with him. His legacy will live on through his music, and we will forever love him.”