Dance

Veteran Producer Erick Morillo Dead at 49

Erick Morillo
Amanda Edwards/Getty Images

DJ Erick Morillo attends the 2017 Los Angeles Film Festival screening of "What We Started" at the ArcLight Santa Monica on June 15, 2017 in Santa Monica, Calif.

Veteran DJ Erick Morillo has passed away at age 49.

According to a representative of The Miami Beach Police Department, officers are investigating Morillo's death after receiving a 911 call this morning at 10:42 a.m to 5660 La Gorce Drive in Miami Beach. Detectives are currently on scene and in the preliminary stages of the investigation. Details regarding cause of death have not yet been confirmed.

Born in New Jersey, Morillo blew up during the '90s house music boom and is considered one of the world's first superstar DJs, with one of many high points coming via his 1993 hit "I Like To Move It," which was released under the alias Reel 2 Reel.

Morillo struggled with addiction throughout his career and was open regarding his battles, telling Pete Tong during a keynote speech at the 2016 International Music Summit that no longer being the "top dog" in the evolving dance music scene was difficult for his ego, which led to an increase in drug use.

"At one point, I couldn't even urinate. Every time I tried, it would be stuck and the pain meant I had to go to hospital where they put me to sleep," he told Tong. "When I woke up, they had slashed some of my arm off because it was so infected from putting ketamine in it."

Earlier this month, Morillo was arrested on charges of sexual battery after turning himself in to the Miami police after a rape kit tested positive for his DNA.

The arrest was related to a December 2019 incident during which Morillo and an unnamed woman were working as DJs at a party on Miami's Star Island. They along with one other woman, went back to Morillo's house in Miami Beach after the event for drinks. It was here, according to the arrest report, that the victim told detectives Morillo “made several advances towards her, some sexual in nature, but she refused all of his attempts.”

The woman then went to a bedroom in the house to sleep. The arrest reports says that she “reported waking up nude on the bed, with Mr. Morillo standing on the side of the bed also nude.”

Morillo was scheduled for a court hearing this Friday, September 4.