MCKEES ROCKS (KDKA) — A man is now facing federal charges in connection with the multiple overdoses cases, three of them fatal, over the weekend in Pittsburgh’s South Side.

The charges come after undercover law enforcement officials raided a home in McKees Rocks overnight in connection with the series of overdoses.

Neighbors say the raid happened around 3 a.m. at a home on Patterson Street.

FBI Pittsburgh confirms they “conducted law enforcement activity” at the location.

One man was taken into custody. He is now facing federal charges related to the overdose patients found Sunday morning at Southside Works City Apartments.

He is identified as Peter Rene Sanchez Montalvo, also known as Carlos. Pittsburgh Police say he is the person who provided the drugs and is charged with possession with intent to distribute and substance causing death/serious bodily injury.

Five patients were found in an apartment, one in an elevator, and another was found at the corner of 26th Street and East Carson Street.

The three men who died have been identified as 32-year-old Rubiel Martinez of Columbus, 38-year-old Josue Serrano of Carthage, and 32-year-old Joel Pecina of Coraopolis.

Investigators say surviving victims said they did a “bump” of suspected cocaine and people immediately began to “drop.”

According to police, Sanchez Montalvo and the overdose victims were all at the Insomnia Discotec in Brookline on Saturday night. That is where they got the orange wristbands they were all wearing.

Police say Sanchez Montalvo eventually left the club and went to the South Side apartment where the overdoses happened. It was where he had been staying.

Several people who were at the club later joined him at the apartment for what police say was described as an “after-party.” Some of those people included members of the band that played at the bar.

Police say Sanchez Montalvo allegedly distributed a white-powdered substance, believed to be cocaine, to those in attendance. Shortly after, multiple people became seriously ill.

The initial investigation by the Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office has determined the presence of possible fentanyl in the white powder.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Sanchez Montalvo had the suspected narcotics in a box. He allegedly scooped out a large quantity and went around the room “with the knife, allowing individuals to sniff the white powder from it.”

(Photo Credit: Meghan Schiller/KDKA)


On Sunday, investigators said they believed the incident was an isolated drug-overdose event, not a widespread situation.

Sanchez Montalvo appeared in federal court this afternoon. He will have another hearing on Thursday.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office say they intend to seek detention of the defendant without bail.

The law provides for a maximum total sentence of not less than 20 years and up to life in prison, a fine of $1,000,000, or both.

Anyone who has knowledge of the party or event they attended is asked to call police at 412-323-7141.

Meghan Schiller