A Hollywood Hills man has been charged with promoting the rapper Mac Miller counterfeit drugs containing fentanyl before the artist died of a drug overdose last Sept, federal prosecutors announced Wednesday.
The defendant, Cameron James Pettit, 28, agreed to provide Mr. Miller with oxycodone pills, cocaine, and Xanax, in accordance with the criminal complaint filed in USA District Court in LA. But, instead of providing real oxycodone, Mr. Pettit delivered the 26-year-old rapper bogus oxycodone that contained fentanyl, a synthetic opiate estimated to be 50 times as strong as heroin, in accordance with the criticism.
Two days later, on September 7, 2018,” Mr. Miller died in his Studio City home. Mr. Miller, who had been born Malcolm James McCormick, had just released his 5th full-length album, “Swimming,” when he died.
The LA County Medical Examiner-Coroner later determined that Mr. Miller had suffered an accidental deadly overdose of fentanyl, alcohol, and cocaine. Investigators believe that the rapper died after snorting the pills that are counterfeit.
The criticism provides a window into Mr. Miller’s final days. On Tuesday, September 4 he texted Mr. Pettit requesting drugs. When he did not respond right away, Mr. Miller texted a madam from whom he had previously procured drugs, in accordance with the complaint, which noted that she sent a sex worker to his residence in Studio City, Calif.,
Then Mr. Pettit, from whom Mr. Miller had previously obtained drugs, responded to Mr. Miller by text, in accordance with the complaint.
Early on September 5, both parties provided Mr. Miller with blue pills that appeared to be oxycodone, among other medications, in accordance with the complaint. A Drug Enforcement Administration representative later determined that Mr. Miller had crushed and snorted pills from only one source.
All five pills provided by the woman were in his possession when he died, according to Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for USA Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California. “They had been tested and there was not any fentanyl,” he explained.
It had been clear he’d crushed and snorted a minimum of one pill from the other batch, which looked somewhat distinct with the criticism. Testing showed that this batch contained fentanyl. Investigators believe that these had been the pills provided by Mr. Pettit.
Hours after the rapper’s departure was reported on September 7, Mr. Pettit sent a message to a buddy saying, “more than likely I’ll die in jail,” in accordance with the criticism.
At a court hearing Wednesday mid-day, Mr. Pettit was ordered held without bond pending trial, in accordance with the US Attorney’s Office.
The Federal Public Defender’s Office for the Central District of California, which is representing Mr. Pettit, declined to comment on the case.
Court records show that Mr. Pettit was sentenced to 30 days in jail in 2010 for possessing a controlled substance. He was separately sentenced to 30 days that year for brandishing a fake gun in a threatening manner.
If convicted of the drug trafficking charge, Mr. Pettit could face a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.
The involvement of fentanyl puts Mr. Miller in the company of other musicians like Prince, Tom Petty, and Lil Peep, all of whom died from accidental overdoses involving the drug in recent years. A major component in the growing opiate crisis across the United States, fentanyl is often mixed into black-market supplies of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and benzodiazepines.
Mr. Miller was known as a versatile rapper and producer who refused to adhere to one style. Each of his albums debuted in the Top Five of the Billboard chart. He often rapped about substance abuse and spoke openly about his struggles with depression and addiction.