Josh Seiter, a former contestant on ABC’s The Bachelorette, says a recent message on his Instagram page that announced his death was the result of his account getting hacked.
In a video shared to his account Tuesday, Seiter said that he is alive and well and that a note posted a day prior that appeared to announce his death was the result of “a cruel joke” aimed to mock his previous posts about mental health issues. Seiter was a contestant on season 11 of the dating series that starred Kaitlyn Bristowe and was eliminated during the first week of episodes that aired in May 2015.
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“As you can see, I am alive and well,” Seiter said in the new video. “My account was hacked; for the last 24 hours I have been trying desperately to get into it. Somebody was playing a cruel joke and mocking my mental illness and the struggles I’ve gone through with depression and suicide attempts. I’m sorry for all the pain they caused when they made that post.”
Seiter, whose verified Instagram account has more than 450,000 followers, added that he and his team will “try to identify who was behind this” and that he intends to share further updates as they come.
The Hollywood Reporter has reached out to Instagram operator Meta for comment.
On Monday, a note posted to Seiter’s account stated, “It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share the tragic news of Joshua’s unexpected passing.” The since-deleted message, which led numerous media outlets to report his death, included information about the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.
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