Four Arrested in Connection to Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Overdose Death

Investigators Arrest Four People in Connection to Famous Actor’s Overdose Death

overdose deathOn Sunday, February 2nd, screen and stage actor Philip Seymour Hoffman died of a drug overdose in his Manhattan apartment. Now, New York police have arrested four people in connection to the film star’s overdose death from heroin and other narcotics.

Hoffman was believed by many to be the most talented screen actor of his generation, and won an Academy Award in 2006 for his portrayal of Truman Capote in the film “Capote.” He was also a stage actor, and appeared on Broadway three times.

The three men and one woman were arrested on Tuesday, February 4th during a raid on a building in Manhattan’s Chinatown district. Police recovered 350 glassine-style bags of what is believed to be heroin.

When officers investigated Hoffman’s apartment on Sunday, they found about 50 envelopes of what was believed to be heroin, as well as syringes, prescription drugs, and empty glassine-style bags.

The suspects, whom New York police chief Sergeant Thomas Antonetti did not immediately link to Hoffman’s overdose death, are Robert Vineberg, 57, Thomas Cushman, 48, Max Rosenblum and Juliana Luchkiw, both 22. Vineberg and Cushman were both charged with felony drug possession, while Rosenblum and Luchkiw were charged with misdemeanor drug possession.

Hoffman sought drug treatment last year after 20 years of sobriety.

In 2011, the actor admitted to being a drug addict during an interview with “60 Minutes.” He sobered up and stopped doing heroin and other drugs, however, because he became terrified of his addiction.

“You get panicked. … I was 22 and I got panicked for my life. It really was, it was just that,” he said. “And I always think, ‘God, I have so much empathy for these young actors that are 19 and all of a sudden are beautiful and famous and rich.’ I’m like, ‘Oh my God. I’d be dead.'”

However, during the Sundance Film Festival, magazine writer John Arundel met the actor and had a poignant conversation with him.

“I said, ‘What do you do?’ And at that point, he took off his hat and he said, ‘I’m a heroin addict,'” Arundel said. “Didn’t look like he was (joking). Seemed like he was having one of those ‘coming to God’ moments — where it just stuck him as, ‘this is the revelatory moment.'”

Report Last Year Shows South Carolina Ranks 16th in Nation for Overdose Deaths

According to a new report from the Trust for America’s Health, titled Prescription Drug Abuse: Strategies to Stop the Epidemic, South Carolina ranks 16th nationally for drug overdosedeaths.

The report shows that the number of drug overdose deaths in the state has tripled since 1999, and the majority of those deaths come from prescription drug overdoses. Nationally, the rates have doubled in 29 states since 1999; 10 or more states, including South Carolina, have seen drug overdose deaths triple; and four states saw drug overdose death rates quadruple.

This new report particularly highlights the dangers of prescription drug abuse and overdose, which has grown to epidemic proportions nationally in the last ten years. Prescription drug overdose deaths now outnumber those from heroin and cocaine combined, according to the report, and drug overdose deaths now exceed deaths from motor vehicle accidents in 29 states and Washington, DC. Addiction to and abuse of prescription painkillers cost the nation $53.4 billion per year in lost productivity, medical costs, and criminal justice costs.

Currently, only one in 10 Americans receives treatment for their substance abuse disorder.

The Strom Law Firm Can Help with Overdose Death and Drug Charges

Drug abuse, whether prescription drug addiction, heroin abuse, or other substances, is a serious condition that can ruin your life and your reputation. If you are already struggling with an addiction, criminal drug charges can make your situation more stressful and difficult. You could feel alone and abandoned, but you are not automatically guilty and you do still have rights. The attorneys at the Strom Law Firm can help defend you. We offer free, confidential consultations to discuss the facts of your drug charges. 803.252.4800

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