On Wednesday, four men were charged in connection to the death of The Wire and Lovecraft Country star Michael K. Williams.
Williams death was initially being looked into as a “possible drug overdose;” medical examiners later ruled the actor’s death as an accident, according to the AP.
Now, thanks to security camera footage and a months-long undercover sting by an NYPD informant on the same block that Williams reportedly bought the fatal drugs, four men are now in custody for the actor’s death.
The AP has more:
For months, a paid informant working for the NYPD had been making controlled buys of heroin on the same block where Williams purchased his drugs. An undercover police officer made one buy just days before the actor copped his fatal dose, court papers said.
The vials of drugs found with Williams when his body was discovered on Sept. 6 bore the same label, “AAA Insurance,” as the vials purchased by the officer.
The day after the actor’s death, the NYPD’s informant went back to buy more drugs from the same group, recording a conversation in which some members of the crew talked about Williams’ overdose. One denied selling any drugs containing fentanyl.
According to the NYPD, the men in charge of selling the drugs had been under investigation long before Williams’ death. The man who bears the most responsibility, Irvin Cartagena, can be seen on-camera handing the drugs directly to the Boardwalk Empire star, and is set to be charged directly with causing his death.
Cartagena and three other men—namely Hector Robles, Luis Cruz, and Carlos Macci—were arrested on Tuesday. Robles, Cruz and Macci made their first court appearances on Wednesday, with Cartagena’s appearance scheduled for Thursday in Puerto Rico (where he was arrested). According to authorities, the group continued to sell fentanyl-laced heroin even after Williams’ death. They now face charges of conspiracy, which carry a maximum sentence of 40 years. Cartagena’s charge of causing the actor’s death carries a max sentence of life in prison.
“Overdose deaths are a ‘public health crisis,’ U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said announcing the charges on Wednesday. “And it has to stop. Deadly opioids like fentanyl and heroin don’t care about who you are or what you’ve accomplished. They just feed addiction and lead to tragedy.”