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DMX remains on life support after heart attack, lawyer says

The Grammy-nominated rapper is currently in the critical care unit at a hospital in White Plains, New York.
/ Source: NBC News

Grammy-nominated rapper DMX continued to be on life support Saturday and was not breathing on his own following a heart attack, his lawyer said, contradicting an earlier statement on the musician's condition.

DMX, whose real name is Earl Simmons, was at his home around 11 p.m. Friday when he suffered the heart attack, his longtime lawyer, Murray Richman, said. He was immediately hospitalized in grave condition, he said.

Rapper DMX performs in concert at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill on March 27, 2016 in New York City.Noam Galai / Getty Images

Richman and a spokesperson for DMX said they misspoke earlier when they said the rapper had been taken off life support and was breathing on his own.

Medical personnel at the critical care unit at a White Plains, New York, hospital began working on Simmons immediately and had to resuscitate him, he said.

The attorney said he did not know what caused the heart attack.

"Earl is a sweet guy," Richman said. "Earl was a person who could tell such a story. He was a person with such depth. It’s a heartbreaker."

The rapper, 50, has opened up in the past about his struggles with drug addiction, for which he attended rehabilitation on several occasions.

In an interview last year on rapper Talib Kweli's People's Party show, DMX said his drug abuse started at age 14 when his then-mentor gave him a blunt laced with crack.

"He passed the blunt around and ... I hit the blunt. I never felt like this before, it f----- me up. I later found out that he laced the blunt with crack," he said. "Why would you do that to a child? He was like 30, and he knew I looked up to him. Why would you do that to someone who looks up to you?"

DMX, who got emotional during the interview, said he had never smoked anything before that night.

"I wouldn't do that to my worst enemy," he said.

This story originally appeared on NBCNews.com.