Drug dealer pleads guilty in overdose death of actor Michael K. Williams
▶ Watch Video: 4 arrested in connection to Michael K. Williams’ overdose death
The dealer who sold the fatal dose of fentanyl-laced heroin that resulted in the 2021 drug overdose death of “The Wire” star Michael K. Williams pleaded guilty Wednesday to multiple drug charges, the Justice Department announced.
Irvin Cartagena, 39, who also goes by the name “Green Eyes,” pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute heroin, fentanyl, and fentanyl analogue, according to a news release from the U.S. District Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. As part of a plea deal, Cartagena agreed that some of the drugs he sold resulted in the death of Williams.
On Sept. 6, 2021, Williams was found dead at the age of 54 in his home in Brooklyn, New York. One day prior to his death, on Sept. 5, Williams directly purchased heroin laced with fentanyl from Cartagena in a “hand-to-hand transaction,” prosecutors said.
“Irvin Cartagena sold fentanyl-laced heroin in broad daylight in New York City, feeding addiction and causing tragedy,” U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said in a statement. “In doing so, he dealt the fatal dose that killed Michael K. Williams.”
Cartagena was a member of a Drug Trafficking Organization (DTO) which operated in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg between August 2020 and February 2022, according to prosecutors.
“Despite knowing that Williams died after being sold the DTO’s product, Cartagena and his co-conspirators continued to sell fentanyl-laced heroin in broad daylight amidst residential apartment buildings in Brooklyn and Manhattan,” prosecutors said.
In February of 2022, Cartagena and three other men were arrested in connection to Williams’ death.
Cartagena faces a sentence of anywhere from five to 40 years in prison, the attorney’s office said.
Williams, who was born and raised in Brooklyn, won critical acclaim for portraying the shotgun-wielding robber Omar Little on “The Wire” from 2002 to 2008. The Emmy-nominated actor went on to appear in several other HBO series, including “Boardwalk Empire,” in which he portrayed racketeer Chalky White.