Electric Zoo Death Leads to Arrest on Drug Charges

Marc Hogan

By Marc Hogan

Lead News Writer
on 07.31.14 in News

Over the Labor Day weekend last year, the three-day Electric Zoo music festival canceled its final day after two concertgoers died. The circumstances surrounding the deaths of 23-year-old Jeffrey Russ and 20-year-old Olivia Rotondo were consistent with the use of drugs. Now, the man who federal prosecutors say sold the pills to Russ is under arrest, according to The New York Times.

Patrick Morgan, 23, was detained yesterday in Buffalo, New York. Following an inquiry by the Drug Enforcement Administration, prosecutors have charged him with narcotics distribution and narcotics conspiracy. Each charge on its own can result in as long as 20 years in prison.

An unidentified friend involved with the drug deal worked with investigators, allegedly texting Morgan to say, referring to the MDMA pills, “Just know that I no longer blame us for giving the molly to him because it was him that made the mistake of taking too much.” According to the Times, Morgan is out on $100,000 bond. He’s being represented by a public defender, who hasn’t yet commented publicly. Morgan is a student at Syracuse University, a rep for the school confirmed to the The Wall Street Journal.

The arrest comes as Electric Zoo is set for a sixth installment this Labor Day weekend. The electronic music festival, with attendance in the tens of thousands, is slated to start this year on August 29, once again at New York’s Randalls Island. Concert organizers Made Event have said there will be ramped-up security precautions this year, including drug-sniffing dogs and more plainclothes police presence.