Autopsy shows 'The Wire' actor Michael K Williams died of drug overdose

New York City Medical Inspector confirmed on Friday that Williams' autopsy shows he died of drug overdose.

Reuters September 25, 2021


Autopsy confirms actor Michael K Williams, who played shotgun-carrying drug dealer Omar Little in HBO’s crime drama The Wire, died from drug overdose Said on Friday at the New York City Medical Inspector’s Office.

His death was a coincidence, Julie Bolser, a spokeswoman for the New York City Chief Coroner’s Office, said in an email.

Williams, 54, was found dead in his Brooklyn apartment on September 6, and police sources said drug-related equipment had been found on the scene at the time.

“Acute poisoning due to the combined effects of fentanyl, p-fluorofentanyl, heroin and cocaine” was the cause of death determined by coroners, Bolser said in an email.

She declined to comment further on the investigation.

Williams’ colleagues recalled his special talent for humanizing the characters he portrayed and brought his own experience as a black man growing up in New York to his role.

Among the real-life struggles he tapped was a bout of drug addiction, which brought him to his most famous role in Wire. Set in Baltimore, the television series tells the story of drug trafficking from the perspective of criminals, police, and those captured among them. Critics praised Williams for his portrayal of gay drug dealer Little in the war with his rivals.

Other television roles that won Williams’ praise included the characters he drew in Boardwalk Empire, Bessie, and Lovecraft Country.

Williams played Choky White, a powerful African-American gangster, in the HBO series Boardwalk Empire, set in Atlantic City, New Jersey, during the Prohibition era of the 1920s.

During his career, Williams was nominated for an Emmy for his performances on HBO’s Bessie, Night of, and Lovecraft Country. He was also praised for his role in the 2019 Netflix series When They See Us. This is the true story of five teenagers falsely accused of a brutal attack on a female jogger in Central Park, New York.

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