Actress Felicia "Snoop" Pearson of the hit HBO series The Wire has plead guilty to conspiracy to distribute heroin. The plea came one day before her trial was set to begin. Pearson was one of several dozen people arrested last March in a massive drug ring accused of distributing heroin in Baltimore.
Prosecutors say Pearson was captured on audiotape making drug buys—an ironic imitation of The Wire.
The judge accepted the plea deal and suspended a seven-year sentence with credit for time served, reports the Baltimore Sun.
"I have things to do, I have to move on with my life," said Pearson, 31, explaining her decision to take a deal. She repeatedly said she would have been found "not guilty" at trial, but that she couldn't wait for the proceeding, which could have been years in coming.
A statement of facts read aloud by a prosecutor Monday claims that Pearson sometimes allowed two heroin dealers to use her downtown apartment to store drugs and money in exchange for payment, that she occasionally sold the drug herself and that another member of the conspiracy — who was kidnapped by rival drug dealers — stopped by Pearson's place to pick up his own ransom.
Pearson has a very troubled history. At 14-years-old, she was convicted of second degree murder and released from prison after serving a six-and-a-half year sentence. She was arrested in 2010 for refusing to testify in a murder trial, reports the Washington Post.
The Wire ran from 2002 to 2008 and was filmed in Baltimore, putting a spotlight on the city's struggle with drug violence. Pearson's character—also named "Snoop"—was a hardcore killer for a drug gang. "Snoop" was one of several Black gay characters in the series—homothug and stickup artist Omar Little became a pop culture icon—and Pearson attracted a cult following for playing television's first unapologetic Black, butch lesbian. "Snoop" was famously killed off by actor Tristan Wilds, who played a reluctant young assassin.
Pearson was then described as "one of [the] rare openly gay Black actress in Hollywood." Unfortunately she displayed an amazing lack of awareness on LGBT issues. In a 2008 interview with Jasmyne Cannick, Pearson said she "really wouldn’t know" anything about homophobia or discrimination" in Hollywood or the Black community because it "never" affected her.