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Man accused of passing out fentanyl in deadly mass overdose at Pittsburgh party faces new charges


The man accused of passing out a white powder that killed three people and sickened four others at a wild Pittsburgh party over the weekend has been slapped with a seven-count federal indictment.

Authorities said Peter Montalvo went around the apartment letting people sniff a substance they believed was cocaine from his knife. But the man, who also goes by Carlos, was distributing a deadly dose of fentanyl that caused people to immediately “drop," court records show.

The disturbing incident, part of which was recorded on a witness’ cellphone, happened after several friends left a local club and went to a home at the Southside Works City Apartments for an after-party around 2 a.m. Sunday, authorities said.

Montalvo, 25, was seen in the cellphone video wearing bright-colored clothing and “showing off all the money that he had” before opening a box and scooping out a large quantity of fentanyl, according to the criminal complaint.

Authorities said one of the victims, Rubio Martinez, was found dead outside an elevator. Another man was found lying on the street and was taken to a hospital for treatment.

Inside the apartment, officers found five additional victims, including two who were already dead — Joel Pecina and Josue Serrano. Their ages have not been released, but a Pittsburgh public safety official said they appeared to be between 30 and 50 years old.

Montalvo, a Coachella, Calif., resident, was arrested without incident early Monday morning at a home in McKees Rocks, a Pittsburgh suburb.

He was initially charged with illegal distribution of a controlled substance resulting in death and serious bodily injury. The newly filed indictment charges him with possessing narcotics with intent to distribute. If convicted, he could face up to life in prison and a $10 million fine.

“These cases are stark reminders that although we have made significant progress, we continue to fight an epidemic,” U.S. Attorney Scott Brady said in a statement. “I commend the tireless efforts of our law enforcement partners who within 24 hours of the first overdose arrested the distributor of these deadly narcotics and took five kilograms of it off the streets.”

Montalvo was scheduled to appear in court on Thursday.