Elisa Lam: Who is Pablo 'Morbid' Vergara and why was he accused in the 21-year-old's death at the Cecil Hotel?
The Netflix docuseries sees the death metal musician speak about how he began receiving numerous death threats for his supposed involvement in Elisa Lam's death
Content Warning: Violence, Suicide
Netflix's latest true-crime docuseries, 'Crime Scene: The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel' focuses on the deadly history of the hotel that was built before the Great Depression hit. The Cecil Hotel fell on bad times because of the economic depression, following which it was never able to reach the glory it intended to. The hotel's surrounding area began to decline in the following years, as suicides and other violent deaths on the premises became more frequent.
Numerous residents reportedly committed suicide in their hotel rooms, and by the 1960s, the hotel became to be known as "The Suicide" by longtime residents. The most recent mysterious death was that of 21-year-old student Elisa Lam. Lam was visiting California and was staying at the hotel, initially in a dorm-style room shared with other residents, then moved to an individual room when other residents began complaining about her behavior.
On January 31, 2013, Lam disappeared and a search conducted by law enforcement in the following days. Her body was discovered more than two weeks later in a water cistern on the roof of the hotel. How Lam got there was subject to speculation and internet sleuths began to look for the truth for themselves. Many suspected that Lam was killed and that the hotel and perhaps someone in the Los Angeles Police Department was covering it up.
As netizens began combing through every available material online on the Cecil Hotel, they came across a video by a death metal musician called Morbid, who had uploaded a video of himself at the Cecil Hotel. Among his music videos, there was one that showed a woman being chased until she ended up dead — this was uploaded just a few days after Lam disappeared. In another song, Morbid sang about a woman dying in water.
Did Morbid kill Elisa Lam?
Amateur detectives soon began connecting the dots, speculating that Morbid's videos were more than just coincidences. Morbid, whose real name is Pablo Vergara, then uploaded a video, masking his face and voice, saying that he is innocent. However, theories about his involvement in Lam's death went viral, and he was even featured in a Taiwanese news website in regards to Lam's death.
Vergara appeared in Netflix's docuseries and spoke about how he began receiving numerous death threats for his supposed involvement in Lam's death. Additionally, all his social media accounts, including his Gmail, Facebook, and YouTube accounts were disabled.
However, at the time of Lam's death and disappearance, Vergara was in Mexico, signing contracts. He tells he even has hard proof — the contracts, as well as his stamped passport. Nevertheless, he continued getting death threats, to the point that it broke him. He says in the documentary, "There was no escape, I tried to take my life and I woke up in a psychiatric hospital."
Where is Morbid now?
Vergara says in the docuseries that he is not a very active musician anymore because he is afraid of his words being misunderstood. He is an alum of the New York Film Academy (NYFA) and works as a producer, director, screenwriter, cinematographer, and actor. His credits include 'Necromurder', 'Mafia Boss', 'Animus', and more.
In an interview with NYFA, Vergara said he turned to filmmaking after he became a father and was "struggling in a failing music career where basically I was stuck and being ripped off left and right and was going nowhere."
He also said that he would love to act more, saying, " I love acting, but it’s hard when you are on both sides of the camera, so I would welcome acting gigs more." 'Crime Scene: The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel' is now available to stream on Netflix.