(ABC NEWS) Chris Kelly, one half of the '90s rap duo Kris Kross, has died of a possible drug overdose, Georgia authorities said.
Kelly, 34, was pronounced dead Wednesday night at the Atlanta Medical Center, Clint Harbin, an investigator with the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office, told ABC News Radio.
Authorities are investigating the circumstances surrounding his death and an autopsy is expected to be performed later today.
"It appears it may have been a possible drug overdose," said Cpl. Kay Lester, a spokeswoman for the Fulton County police, according to The Associated Press.
Kelly (known as "Mac Daddy"), along with Chris "Daddy Mac" Smith, the backward-pants-wearing mini-rappers, rose to fame with their song "Jump" from their 1992 album, "Totally Krossed Out."
"Jump" hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and remained there for eight weeks.
Kelly and Smith were discovered by music producer and rapper Jermaine Dupri in an Atlanta mall. Kelly was 13 when "Totally Krossed Out" was released. The album went on to multiplatinum status thanks to "Jump," which remained a popular song throughout 1992.
They toured with Michael Jackson later that year during his "Dangerous World Tour."
Their gimmick of wearing clothes backward won over legions of fans and allowed the duo to cross over into mainstream success. They even went on to release their own video game titled "Kris Kross: Make My Video" for the Sega CD console.
They released "Da Bomb" in 1993, which failed to match the success of their prior album. One of the singles off the album, also titled "Da Bomb," featured female rapper Da Brat.
The group's last album, "Young, Rich & Dangerous," was released in 1996 and reached gold status.
Earlier this year, the group performed together in Atlanta to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Dupri's label, So So Def.
"He actually was still working on music and recording," said Yahoo music writer Billy Johnson Jr., who interviewed Kelly in February.
"He said he had several hundred songs that he had recorded and he had mentioned that during his time away from releasing music that he had actually gone back to school to learn how to be a studio engineer," Johnson said, according to ABC News Radio.
Johnson also discussed questions about Kelly's health after pictures surfaced online with patches of his hair missing.
"I asked him about that and he said he had skin disease called alopecia and he said that those rumors had been very hurtful because people thought he had cancer and it wasn't true," Johnson said.
Rapper LL Cool J tweeted a link to his new song, "Jump on It," and dedicated it to Kelly.
"R.I.P Chris Kelly. This song is now officially dedicated to you. May GOD embrace your soul & lift up your family," he tweeted."
Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons and Da Brat also both tweeted condolences overnight.
ABC News' Jason Nathanson and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
A St. Charles County man faces over three decades in prison for allegedly causing an accident that took the life of an unborn baby.
Prosecutors say Paul Murphy was under the influence of benzodiazepine--an anxiety and insomnia medication--when he hit the car carrying a pregnant woman on March 16. The woman was 19 weeks pregnant when the accident happened and she gave birth to a still born baby.
If convicted on all three counts of assault he faces, Murphy could spend 36 years behind bars.
Ameren has set up a memorial fund for one of their line workers who died last week. Dave Burns was electrocuted while performing repairs in the wake of the Hazelwood tornado.
Donations can be sent to the following fund:
In Memory of Dave Burns Fund
Vantage Credit Union
P.O. Box 4433
Bridgeton, Mo. 63044
Sympathy cards and/or letters of condolence can be sent to:
Baue Funeral Home
Attn: Ryan Burns
3950 W. Clay St.
St. Charles, Mo. 63301
Thursday's flooding has claimed one life. Police report that an 80-year-old Jefferson County woman after she was caught in a flash flood.
The woman was driving in DeSoto when it appears her car was swept off the road by flood waters. No more information on the woman's death has been released.
Nearly two dozen other drivers in Jefferson County were saved after becoming stuck in the water.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Randolph County coroner has ruled another inmate death as a homicide at the Menard maximum-security prison in Chester in far southern Illinois.
Coroner Randy Dudenbostel says 35-year-old William Crowder died March 26 from "manual strangulation." The coroner classified the death as a homicide.
State's Attorney Jeremy Walker intends to file first-degree murder charges against a Menard inmate when he receives investigative reports.
He would not name the inmate but says the man is not due for release until 2013.
Crowder was found dead in his cell in the prison's segregation unit at 10:36 p.m. Crowder's was the third homicide since Jan. 31.
Walker previously filed murder charges against former Menard inmates for the deaths of 25-year-old Jason Hall and 64-year-old Yusuf Abuzir.
JENNINGS, Mo. (AP) - St. Louis County police are investigating the death of a 2-month-old boy in Jennings.
The child is identified as Adrian Robertson. Police were called to a home about 3 p.m. Monday. Adrian was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead about an hour later. His cause of death was not released.
Toxicology tests have been performed and the medical's examiner's office is awaiting results.
ALTON, Ill. (AP) - A southwestern Illinois motorist is accused of being impaired when he allegedly hit and killed a bicyclist in the Mississippi River city of Alton.
Prosecutors in Madison County on Monday charged 51-year-old Allen Cordes of Alton with two counts of aggravated driving under the influence causing death.
Authorities allege that Cordes was drunk and high on marijuana last Saturday night when the van he was driving hit 50-year-old Alton cyclist James Stewart. Stewart died at the scene.
Online court records don't show whether Cordes has an attorney. He does not have a listed home telephone number.
Cordes was jailed Tuesday on $75,000 bond.
A day after a Normandy High School student died following an incident at the school, police are still trying to piece together what happened.
KMOV TV reports police say the 15-year-old student collapsed after another student, 14, reportedly struck him in the chest.
Officers say the interaction was believed to be friendly, and the students were simply horsing around. After the student collapsed, he was taken to St. Louis Children’s Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.
The incident was believed to have happened shortly before 1 p.m. Thursday. It is unknown if the student suffered from a preexisting medical condition that may have led to the collapse. Police are currently collecting statements from other student witnesses.
Sad news as crews continue to cleanup efforts in North County.
An Ameren lineman died today while working to restore power in St. Ann. Reports are the worker, an 18 year veteran, came in contact with a live wire and was electrocuted.