Armando Vega Gil—the bassist and founding member of the Mexican rock band Botellita de Jerez—has died in an apparent suicide that took place on early Monday morning, according to his band’s official Twitter account. The Associated Press said that authorities in Mexico City found a body, but had not confirmed if it belonged to Vega Gil. He was 64 years old.
On Monday morning, Vega Gil posted a suicide note on his social media accounts. In the public letter, he revealed that he had been accused of sexual misconduct as part of the Mexican music scene’s iteration of the #MeToo movement. A woman anonymously made allegations against Vega Gil on the Twitter account @metoomusicamx, stating that she had been abused and harassed by the artist when she was 13 years old. He denied the allegations, but claimed that he would have no way of defending himself as a public persona. He said he would be taking his own life as “a radical declaration of innocence.”
“Do not blame anyone for my death: It is a suicide, a voluntary, conscious, free and personal decision,” he wrote on Twitter.
The official Botellita de Jerez band page confirmed Vega Gil’s death in a tweet that read, “With immense sadness, we share that our partner @ArmandoVegaGil passed away today. We are processing this news and doing the corresponding procedures. Rest in peace, little brother.”
— Armando Vega Gil (@ArmandoVegaGil) April 1, 2019
Con un inmenso pesar, comunicamos que nuestro compañero @ArmandoVegaGil falleció la madrugada de hoy. Nos encontramos procesando esta noticia y haciendo los trámites correspondientes. Descansa en paz hermanito.
— Botellita de Jerez (@HHBotellita) April 1, 2019
Vega Gil had been an original member of the band, which formed in 1982 in Mexico City. The band announced it was breaking up in 2013 after more than 30 years playing together.
In the note, Vega Gil said that he saw the freedom to speak out against a person as an “inalienable right,” particularly for women. However, he noted that he would lose work since his career was “built on my public credibility.” “The only way out I see before me suicide, so I’m deciding toward that,” he wrote. “I want to apologize to women who feel troubled by my words and attitudes, and the women who see my ways as misogynistic.”
The Twitter account @metoomusicamx wrote a response following the news. In a note, the group said, “We ask outlets not to spread false information. Despite the events, we continue our promise of being a platform of distribution and a network of support for victims of abuse and violence in the music scene.”
— MeTooMúsicosMexicanos (@metoomusicamx) April 1, 2019