The latest in a series of death rumors has some online worrying that TikTok star Jorge Garay has died. Jorge, who posts videos under the handle Jeyjeygardi, has amassed more than 4.2 million followers on the platform. His posts are typically focused either on comedy or feature him in close-up making facial reactions in time to the music he is listening to. Now, some are wondering whether Jorge may have died unexpectedly.
Is Jorge Garay dead?
Like many of the recent death rumors trending online, the rumor that Jorge is dead is false. He is alive and well and fell victim to the same rumors that have plagued other celebrities in recent months. In fact, Jorge was trending for another reason, one that may have lasting repercussions for his career on the internet. Along with another popular TikTok creator, he's been accused of grooming and sexting a minor.
What is Jorge Garay accused of?
Jorge was accused of working with his boyfriend Benji Krol, another popular TikTok user, to groom a 15-year-old boy. The accusations allege that the two sent sexually explicit images to the boy in February of this year. The accuser shared his experience using an anonymous Twitter account, and also posted screenshots of his FaceTime logs showing calls with the two TikTokers.
The accuser alleges that Jorge and Benji used their fame to manipulate him, in part because they were known to be a widely accepted gay couple. "They took advantage of my friendship, and exploited and coerced me, a minor, into doing what they wanted for sexual pleasure,” the person said.
“They used their power as an influencer to manipulate me into doing what they wanted because our feelings were ‘mutual,’ ‘I knew what I was doing,’ and because ‘I wanted it,’" the accuser continued. "Looking back at all of this, it is very easy to be manipulated by someone older than you.” The message was first posted on Aug. 22 and has since gone viral, which helps explain why Jorge's name has been trending online.
Benji Krol has acknowledged the accusations and apologized.
In his response, Benji said that he hadn't commented sooner because he had tried to take his own life. “The reason it’s taken so long is because I tried to kill myself. I was in the hospital and I’ve been recovering and trying to piece everything together,” he wrote.
“I’m not trying to gain sympathy points from telling you this, I’m just giving the real explanation you all deserve for being late to respond," he continued. "The reason for me trying was due to a lot of things building up and not directly because of this, it’s not the first time.” In concluding his response, he acknowledged that some of the accusations were true, and apologized to the victim.
“I’m extremely sorry to the victim and hope they are doing okay," Benji wrote. "I know none of this should have ever happened and that there’s nothing I can do to fix it but work on bettering myself and piecing everything together. And I hope everyone can respect their privacy.”