The Wire co-creator David Simon has taken the unusual step of asking for mercy for a man who’s charged in connection with the death of Michael K. Williams, the late actor from Simon’s acclaimed HBO drama.

Williams, 54, played stick-up man Omar Little in the drug war series. He perished in 2021 from an overdose of fentanyl-laced heroin. Last year, four men were charged in a Manhattan federal court in association with his death.

Authorities said at the time that the men continued to sell fentanyl-laced heroin in broad daylight amid apartment buildings in Brooklyn and Manhattan, even after knowing that Williams had died from one of their products. One of those men is Carlos Macci, 71, and now Simon is making a case that Macci should receive leniency.

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According to The New York Times, Simon sent a three-page letter to a Manhattan judge arguing that Macci is a victim of the same circumstances that claimed Williams’ life. Macci pled guilty to possessing and distributing narcotics and is facing a 10-year sentence.

“What happened to Mike is a grievous tragedy,” Simon reportedly 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. … No possible good can come from incarcerating a 71-year-old soul, largely illiterate, who has himself struggled with a lifetime of addiction” and was “caught up in the diaspora of addiction himself.”

Simon added that Williams was “one of the finest actors with whom I have had the honor to collaborate and one of the most thoughtful, gracious and charitable souls I could ever call a friend.”

The Wire premiered in 2008 and ran for five seasons. In 2008, then-Sen. Barack Obama called The Wire his favorite TV series and Williams’ Omar his favorite character. After the show ended, Williams was outspoken about his struggles with drug addiction. Williams also portrayed Montrose Freeman on HBO’s Lovecraft Country, for which he received a 2021 Emmy nomination for outstanding supporting actor in a drama series.

“I just want people to remember me as one cool-ass dude, you know?” Williams told THR in 2011. “Someone who cared. And I would never want anybody to say, ‘Oh, he forgot where he came from.’ That would hurt me the most.”

Source: Hollywood

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