Michael K. Williams, who is best known for portraying Omar Little in the HBO drama series The Wire, was found dead inside his Brooklyn home on Monday. The actor was 54.
The New York Police Department has confirmed to the media that the actor died from a suspected drug overdose. The mesmerizing Hollywood star and five-time Emmy nominee had openly discussed his struggles with his addiction to drugs over the years.
Williams has been part of many acclaimed HBO series including The Night Of and Love craft Country. He is also known for portraying the character of a powerful gangster Albert Chalky White, in the Prohibition period TV series Boardwalk Empire. Williams had a recurring role in the American action thriller and science fiction TV series created by J. J. Abrams titled Alias.
He also acted in several movies including Inherent Vice, Gone Baby Gone, 12 Years a Slave, and The Road. His portrayal of a gay streetwise robber of drug gangs in The Wire has earned him much appreciation in the field of acting.
New York Police Department spokesman John Grimpel said police received an emergency call at 2:00 PM on Monday (18:00 GMT) after which they went to Williams's Brooklyn apartment. The actor was discovered lying on the floor face-down and unconscious in the dining room of his luxury apartment. Reportedly, the substance he is suspected to have used appeared to be heroin, which was found on the kitchen table.
Fellow actors, filmmakers writers and other well-known personalities from various fields have been paying tribute to the late actor through social media.
"The depth of my love for this brother can only be matched by the depth of my pain learning of his loss," Williams' The Wire co-star Wendell Pierce wrote on Twitter and added, "A immensely talented man with the ability to give voice to the human condition portraying the lives of those whose humanity is seldom elevated until he sings their truth."
"The loss of Michael K. Williams is just heartbreaking. One of our great actors," children's book writer John Lithgow tweeted.
"Warner Bros. Television also mourns the tragic loss of Michael K. Williams, a force of nature on screen, and a kind and gentle soul in life. Our thoughts are with his family, friends, colleagues and fans," the official Twitter handle of the American multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate read.