“The Wire” co-creator David Simon has asked a Manhattan judge to show mercy to a man charged in the 2021 death of his friend Michael K. Williams.
On Thursday (July 6), Simon appeared in a New York court with a three-page letter, The New York Times reported. He was there to urge the magistrate to grant leniency to the defendant, Carlos Macci, 71. Williams passed away two years ago after overdosing in his Brooklyn penthouse apartment. Local authorities later discovered the veteran actor bought drugs from Irvin Cartagena, who agreed that the fentanyl-laced heroin mix he sold Michael led to his death. Cartagena pleaded guilty to the charges brought against him and faces a maximum of 40 years ahead of his August sentencing.
“What happened to Mike is a grievous tragedy,” Simon wrote to Judge Ronnie Abrams. “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.”
The 63-year-old screenwriter stated that Williams affirmed that he was responsible for himself and that his decision to use or stop using drugs was his own. That, along with the actor’s reported stance against mass incarceration and the drug war, “[convinced] [Simon] that [Williams] would want [Simon] to write this letter.” The Washington, D.C. native continued,“No possible good can come from incarcerating a 71-year-old soul, largely illiterate, who has himself struggled with a lifetime of addiction” and who sold drugs “as someone caught up in the diaspora of addiction himself.”
Macci is one of four men charged in Williams’ passing. All of them have pleaded guilty. Per the NYT, the court’s probation office recommended a sentence of 10 years for Macci. The proposed sentence comes after he agreed to having and selling drugs. Macci’s sentencing is scheduled for later this month.