The former Los Angeles Angels employee, Eric Kay, asked drug suppliers to deliver opioids to the team’s stadium. Prosecutors say that Kay was addicted to painkillers and wanted them delivered in order to sell them on the black market.
In court papers released Friday, federal prosecutors disclosed part of their evidence against former Los Angeles Angels communications director Eric Kay, claiming that he solicited drug dealers to bring opioids to Angel Stadium in exchange for club memorabilia and tickets.
In connection with the drug-related death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs on July 1, 2019, Kay faces felony distribution charges.
According to the complaint, Kay used the internet marketplace app OfferUp to communicate with oxycodone suppliers in the spring of 2019, including when he was in treatment for opiate addiction. Kay allegedly wrote, “In one conversation, said to have taken place in June of that year,” “Is it possible for you to visit Angel Stadium? This is where I work. If you wished, I could leave you tickets for the game.” Then comes, “It was my fault. That sounds strange. Ha. I’m afraid I won’t be able to leave work tonight.”
Kay reportedly wrote to someone named in another conversation “”Do you have a son, Sharky?” If you want, I could set him up with an autographed [Mike] Trout ball in exchange for a trade.” “We dodger fans my boi,” Sharky replied.
Skaggs was discovered dead in his Southlake, Texas, hotel room after asphyxiating on his vomit. Kay said federal investigators he gave him oxycodone on many occasions. He had taken oxycodone, fentanyl, and grain alcohol, according to an autopsy, and his death was declared accidental.
Kay was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Texas with supplying a controlled drug, which resulted in Skaggs’ death. Skaggs would not have died if it hadn’t been for the fentanyl, a potentially deadly synthetic opioid often found in counterfeit medicines, according to prosecutors. Prosecutors haven’t revealed when or how they came at that conclusion.
After Skaggs’ death in 2019, ESPN reported that Kay informed DEA investigators that he and Skaggs had made a deal in which Kay would get narcotics for the pitcher and himself, and Skaggs would pay for them. According to Kay, he was just doing Skaggs’ bidding in order to fuel both the player’s and his own addictions. Kay reportedly informed agents at the time that he thought five other unidentified Angels players had taken narcotics, according to ESPN. The government claims in the complaint that Kay operated a distribution network inside the squad, dealing with five players.
The Los Angeles Times was the first to report on the filing.
The petition in Kay’s case, which is set for a trial in Texas in October, also provides a first public look at the defense team’s approach. One government move aims to prevent Kay’s lawyers from introducing evidence that the medical examiner who performed Skaggs’ autopsy, Marc Krouse, committed errors in previous autopsy reports. Krouse was dismissed earlier this year after an audit that revealed problems in hundreds of instances. The government, on the other hand, claims that just two of Krouse’s inaccuracies were relevant to its cases, and that Skaggs’ autopsy revealed no errors.
Another portion of the motion claims, for the first time publicly, that Kay spent the whole night in question with Skaggs in his room and didn’t return to his own room until 8:25 a.m. on July 1. The defense is likely to claim that Kay pushed his door open and didn’t need to use his key to return to his room earlier that night, based on Friday’s motion. The government wants Kay’s lawyers to refrain from bringing up the issue of his door until Kay himself testifies about it, allowing prosecutors to cross-examine him.
Prosecutors also claimed in a court complaint that in December 2019, five months after Skaggs died, detectives discovered evidence of opiates with fentanyl in Kay’s desk at Angel Stadium.
When contacted on Monday, Kay’s lawyer, Michael Molfetta, refused to comment on the contents of the file, claiming that he was bound by a gag order in the case and that he was disappointed that the papers were made public.
He said, “My understanding is that things are meant to be filed under seal.” “It’s sad to me that the rules aren’t being enforced equitably, but we’ve followed them and will go to court to fight our case. We are not going to go to court to have our teeth knocked out. We believe we have a compelling story that is backed up by facts.”
After business hours on Monday, prosecutors could not be contacted for comment.