The creator of HBO’s The Wire drama series, David Simon, is begging the justice system to grant mercy to 71-year-old Carlos Macci who was implicated in the fentanyl death of actor Michael K. Williams, 54. A famous The Wire actor, Williams died of fentanyl overdose in 2021 after purchasing the stuff from Macci and three others implicated in his death.
Simon in a three-page letter to Judge Ronnie Abrams of the US District Court in Manhattan asked for leniency for Macci because the late Williams himself chose to bear responsibility for his drug issues. Simon said Williams would want to see Macci pardoned because he bore the greater responsibility for his health and wellbeing, and that nothing good would come from incarcerating the elderly Macci.
“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.” And second, “No possible good can come from incarcerating a 71-year-old soul, largely illiterate, who has himself struggled with a lifetime of addiction” and sold drugs not for profit “but rather as someone caught up in the diaspora of addiction himself.”
Simon said he was very close to Williams and that the latter confessed to a producer during the third season of filming The Wire that he struggled with drug dependence. He said the producer detailed a crew member to keep the actor away from drugs for many weeks during production, even though the actor as stickup man Omar Little attacked drug dealers in the suburbs of Baltimore in his movies.
“I never failed to see him take responsibility for himself and his decisions,” The Wire creator said of Williams, adding that he 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.”
He said Williams would also want pardon for Macci who alongside the other three pleaded guilty for possession and distribution of narcotics. The elderly suspect is due for sentencing before the end of this month and according to his lawyer, Benjamin Zeman, the court’s probation office is recommending a 10-year prison sentence for him. Zeman suggested that the one and half years he has spent in detention should suffice for his sentence.