According to a 42-page criminal complaint filed in the Central District Court of California on Wednesday, September 4th, federal prosecutors have charged 28-year-old Cameron James Pettit in connection with the death of hip-hop artist Mac Miller.
Last year, Miller was found dead of an overdose of fentanyl, alcohol, and cocaine, however, he allegedly had no clue that he was consuming fentanyl and was under the impression that he was buying prescription Percocet. Sadly, the Percocet was counterfeit and contained enough fentanyl to kill Miller, when mixed with the other drugs in his system.
The coroner initially ruled the death an accidental overdose, since alcohol, cocaine, and fentanyl were found in his system. However, in the weeks and months after his death, details surfaced about Cameron James Pettit, the person who had provided Miller with the counterfeit pills.
In a statement announcing the charges, US Attorney Nick Hanna said that the federal government is coming down hard on drug dealers who are found to be trafficking fentanyl, citing the many deaths caused by the drug.
“We are aggressively targeting drug dealers responsible for trafficking illicit fentanyl, which has become the most deadly facet of the opioid epidemic. We are committed to slowing the number of overdose deaths and prosecuting those responsible for spreading this most dangerous opioid,” Hanna said, according to NBC News.
“Fentanyl disguised as a genuine pharmaceutical is a killer, which is being proven every day in America. Drugs laced with cheap and potent fentanyl are increasingly common, and we owe it to the victims and their families to aggressively target the drug dealers that cause these overdose deaths,” Hanna added.
Fentanyl is approximately 80 to 100 times more potent than morphine and roughly 40 to 50 times more potent than pharmaceutical grade (100% pure) heroin. The risk of death and overdose greatly increase because Fentanyl is very disruptive to the respiratory system.
In Instagram messages later obtained by a warrant through the DEA, Pettit clearly voices feelings of guilt for what happened to Miller, but he made no admission that he realized the drugs were counterfeit.
“I think I should probably not post anything …just to be smart,” Pettit allegedly said in one of the messages.
“I’m gonna get off the grid…move to another country,” he said after Miller’s death.
“I am not great … Most likely I will die in jail,” he wrote in another.
Other messages between Pettit and Miller show that Miller asked for Percocet and cocaine.
Miller was was at the height of his career at the time of his death, but was also facing numerous legal battles and press scandals. Just prior to his death, he was arrested and charged with DUI and hit and run after driving into a utility pole and fleeing the scene.
According to a DEA spokesperson, Pettit is currently in custody, and if he is convicted he faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.