David Simon, the creator of “The Wire,” is advocating for leniency in the case of Carlos Macci, one of the men who sold actor Michael K. Williams the fentanyl-laced drugs that killed him. Simon noted that his relationship with the late Williams “convinces me that he would want me to write this letter.”
A three-page document was part of a filing submitted by the defendant’s lawyer to Federal District Court Judge Ronnie Abrams on Thursday, according to The New York Times.
“What happened to Mike is a grievous tragedy,” Simon wrote. “But I know that Michael would look upon the undone and desolate life of Mr. Macci and know two things with certainty: First, that it was Michael who bears the fuller responsibility for what happened.”
He then went on to add, “No possible good can come from incarcerating a 71-year-old soul, largely illiterate, who has himself struggled with a lifetime of addiction.”
Simon also referred to Williams as “one of the most thoughtful, gracious and charitable souls I could ever call a friend.”
Williams was found dead on on Sept. 6, 2021, in his Brooklyn apartment at the age of 54. His death was later ruled an overdose due to a combination of fentanyl, heroin and cocaine. In 2022, four men were arrested in connection with Williams’ death: Irvin Cartagena, Hector Robles, Luis Cruz and Macci.
All four pled guilty with Macci specifically pleading guilty to agreeing to possess and distribute narcotics. The court has recommended a sentence of 10 years for Macci, who has been in jail since his arrest in February 2022. Macci’s lawyer, Benjamin Zeman, issued a filing asking that his client receive a sentence of time served. Simon’s letter was part of that filing.
Williams death came as the fentanyl epidemic gained increased attention from authorities. “Treat this case as if Michael K. Williams was hit by a bullet,” one NYPD officer told his officers at the time. “Make believe he got shot.”
The late actor is best known for portraying Omar Little on HBO’s “The Wire,” which was created by Simon. Praised as one of the best shows of all-time, over the course of five seasons Williams played a notorious stick-up man known for robbing Baltimore drug dealers. For his role, the actor was nominated for two NAACP Image awards.