Missing YouTube Star Etika Found Dead After Posting Video About Mental Illness

Etika went missing last week after posting a video online about the negative effects of social media.

By Sharon Lynn Pruitt

The body of a missing YouTube star was found in the East River less than one week after he posted a video online suggesting that he was struggling with mental health issues and suicidal thoughts.

Authorities discovered the body of popular gaming YouTuber Etika, born Desmond Amofah, near South Street Seaport on Monday at around 6:30 p.m., NBC New York reports. His cause of death has yet to be determined, pending the results of an autopsy.

Authorities confirmed Amofah’s passing in a tweet on Tuesday, writing, “We regret to inform that Desmond Amofah aka Etika has been found deceased.”

A number of his belongings, including his phone and I.D., were found on the Manhattan Bridge last week, unnamed law enforcement sources told NBC New York.

News of Amofah’s death comes just days after the 29-year-old YouTuber went missing. His last known contact with anyone was a phone call on June 19, BuzzFeed reports. Prior to that, he posted a troubling, 8-minute video online, where he stated that he “had no intention of killing myself,” but added, “I’d always push it too far. I guess I am mentally ill.”

Amofah went on to apologize for betraying others and for “leaving such a stained legacy,” the outlet reports. He then spoke out on the downsides of social media.

Desmond Amofah

“Let my story be one that advises caution on too much of this social media s--t, man,” he reportedly said. “It can f--k you up. It can give you an image of what you want your life to be and it can get blown completely out of proportion, dog. Unfortunately, it consumed me.”

Amofah had hundreds of thousands of followers on YouTube.

YouTube reacted to news of the content creator’s death in a brief statement obtained by NBC New York: “We mourn the loss of Etika, a beloved member of our gaming creator community. All of us at YouTube are sending condolences to his loved ones and fans.”

Amofah had a history of being hospitalized for mental health issues, anonymous police sources told NBC New York.

He tweeted in April that he was going to kill himself, and police performed a welfare check at his home in Brooklyn two weeks later in response to an anonymous call reporting an emotionally disturbed person, the New York Post reports. After being taken to a waiting ambulance via a stretcher, he was reportedly transferred to New York Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital for an evaluation.

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