Hoffman's death shines light on New York's heroin problem - FOX 35 News Orlando

Hoffman's death shines light on New York's heroin problem

Posted: Updated:
NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

In the wake of the death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, police are looking for a drug dealer who sells a brand of heroin called Ace of Spades, my law enforcement sources told me. They said it was stamped on some of the drug envelopes allegedly found in the Oscar winner's apartment.

Hoffman appeared to have it all: fame, friends and a family who loved him. It all came to a tragic end on Sunday, when he was found dead in his $10,000-a-month West Village apartment, with a needle stuck in his arm. It came as a shock to many, even though he reportedly battled addiction, and as recently as last spring did a brief stint in rehab.

Heroin use is more than a habit, Dr. Harris Stratyner said. Scoring the drug becomes a ritual.

Police sources say tiny glassine envelopes containing individual doses of heroin, selling for $6 to $10 a hit, were found in his apartment. Some bore the name Ace of Spades, a brand not seen by Brooklyn heroin users since 2009 and by the DEA since 2008.

DEA Special Agent in Charge James Hunt told me branding is key to a dealer's illicit business plan. He said the city is flooded with heroin, as evidenced by a bust they made last week: $8 million worth of heroin seized from a New Jack City-style drug mill inside a Bronx apartment. DEA agents seized decks, or 10 packs of heroin, and the stamps with the brand names, even one for the NFL.

The city Health Department told me heroin-related deaths have skyrocketed 84 percent from 2010 to 2012.

I spoke with a recovering heroin addict who told me he did not want to glorify the drug but wants to warn others how easy it is to get hooked.

Doctors for the city's Medical Examiner are investigating Hoffman's death and should have definitive toxicology results by the end of the week.


  • Manhattan NewsManhattan NewsMore>>

  • Another video shows NYPD cop putting man in choke hold

    Another video shows NYPD cop putting man in choke hold

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 10:08 PM EDT2014-07-24 02:08:13 GMT
    The NYPD is investigating another apparent choke-hold incident during a recent arrest that was captured on video. The video shows a police officer putting a man in a choke hold and then punching him in the face in a subway station in Harlem, police said. A community activist said he received the new video but never had any intention of releasing it to the media.
    The NYPD is investigating another apparent choke-hold incident during a recent arrest that was captured on video. The video shows a police officer putting a man in a choke hold and then punching him in the face in a subway station in Harlem, police said. A community activist said he received the new video but never had any intention of releasing it to the media.
  • Some StubHub accounts breached

    Some StubHub accounts breached

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 4:34 PM EDT2014-07-23 20:34:20 GMT
    Six people were indicted Wednesday in an international ring that managed to take over more than 1,000 StubHub users' accounts and fraudulently buy tickets to such prime events as Jay-Z and Elton John concerts, a New York Yankees-Boston Red Sox game and Broadway shows like "The Book of Mormon," the Manhattan district attorney said. Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. said the thieves would then resell the tickets and split up the proceeds.
    Six people were indicted Wednesday in an international ring that managed to take over more than 1,000 StubHub users' accounts and fraudulently buy tickets to such prime events as Jay-Z and Elton John concerts, a New York Yankees-Boston Red Sox game and Broadway shows like "The Book of Mormon," the Manhattan district attorney said. Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. said the thieves would then resell the tickets and split up the proceeds.
  • Bloomberg flies to Israel in show of support

    Bloomberg flies to Israel in show of support

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 4:12 PM EDT2014-07-23 20:12:27 GMT
    Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg flew to Israel via a commercial El Al flight despite an FAA ban on U.S.-based airlines flying to Tel Aviv. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Bloomberg on the tarmac outside the El Al jet Wednesday at Ben Gurion International Airport.
    Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg flew to Israel via a commercial El Al flight despite an FAA ban on U.S.-based airlines flying to Tel Aviv. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Bloomberg on the tarmac outside the El Al jet Wednesday at Ben Gurion International Airport.
Powered by WorldNow

35 Skyline Drive
Lake Mary, FL 32746

Phone: (407) 644-3535
News Tips: (866) 55-FOX35

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices