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Man Pleads Guilty To Narcotics Charge In Electric Zoo Overdose Death

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) - An upstate New York man has pleaded guilty to a narcotics charge in a prosecution that arose after an overdose death at a New York City music festival.

Patrick Morgan of Buffalo pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of conspiring to distribute narcotics.

The victim, 23-year-old Jeffrey Russ of Rochester, New York, collapsed at the August 2013 Electric Zoo music festival on Randall's Island. He had consumed a drug known as ecstasy or "Molly."

Authorities say Morgan had previously sold pills to other people. One person passed them around.

Prosecutors and a defense lawyer agreed to a stipulated sentencing guideline range. That makes it likely he'll face less than a year in prison on a charge whose maximum is 20 years.

Sentencing is scheduled for March 13.

The spate of drug-related problems prompted city officials to call on the festival's organizers to cancel the last day of performances, which had been slated to include high-profile performers including Avicii and David Guetta.

"The founders of Electric Zoo send our deepest condolences to the families of the two people who passed away this weekend. Because there is nothing more important to us than our patrons, we have decided in consultation with the New York City Parks Department that there will be no show today," the organizers with the Long Island City, Queens-based group Made Event said in a statement the day the event was cancelled.

The festival had been held in the city since 2009, drawing sizeable crowds.

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