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#RIPBianca: A 17-year-old social media star found dead, and photos of the crime were posted online

Lauren Frias , Business Insider US
 Jul 16, 2019, 01:07 PM
The Williams/Devins Family
  • Bianca Devins, a 17-year-old social media influencer, was found dead on Sunday in upstate New York, police said. Her suspected killer, Brandon Clark, 21, took photos of the crime and posted them online.
  • Clark made an "incriminating" phone call to police to report Devins' murder and stabbed himself once police arrived at the scene, authorities said in a statement. He survived several self-inflicted stab wounds to the neck after he was taken to the hospital for emergency treatment.
  • Clark was charged with a state count of second degree murder, according to a statement released by police Monday.
  • For more stories, go to Business Insider SA.

A 17-year-old social media influencer was found dead Sunday morning in upstate New York, and photos of the gruesome murder, taken by the alleged killer, surfaced online, police said.

Police say Bianca Devins was allegedy killed by Brandon Clark, 21, who later posted the photos of Devins' body on his Instagram, with a caption reading, "I'm sorry Bianca." The photos were not removed from the platform until several hours after the incident, and Clark's account was deactivated by Monday afternoon, The New York Times reported.

They were also shared on Discord, a communication platform for gamers, and 4chan, an imageboard website.

Instagram did not immediately respond to INSIDER's request for comment. In a statement to the Times, Instagram said, "Our thoughts go out to those affected by this tragic event. We are taking every measure to remove this content from our platforms."

Clark, was charged with a state count of second degree murder, according to a statement released by Utica police on Monday.

Police said Clark and Devins, who met on Instagram two months ago, attended a concert in New York City on Saturday night, returning to Utica sometime early Sunday morning. Police said there is reason to believe an argument ensued between the two, prompting Clark to produce a large knife "to inflict the injuries that caused [Devins'] death."

Photos of the crime were posted to social media, and it appeared that Clark had slashed Devins' throat. Police received multiple calls to report the crime around 7:20 a.m. local time on Sunday, including one from Clark himself, during, during which police said he "made incriminating statements with respect to the homicide" and alluded to "the fact that he was going to harm himself."

When an officer arrived at the scene, he reported seeing Clark laying beside a black SUV. As the officer approached him, Clark began to stab himself in the neck with a knife, and the officer called for emergency medical care. The officer then reported that Clark lay down across a green tarp.

"The male advised [the officer] that the female was beneath the tarp, and proceeded to pull out a cell phone," police said in their statement. "It was at this time that is believed that the male took self-photographs of himself laying across the deceased female."

When other police officers arrived at the scene, they disarmed Clark and took him into custody. He was severely injured but survived the self-inflicted stab wounds after being treated at a local hospital.

Once news of Devins' death began to circulate social media, #RIPBianca began to trend as followers and social media onlookers alike began to speculate the circumstances of her murder.

Utica police said they are "actively working with the various social media platforms to address the sharing and distribution of these images." The images were shared on Instagram, Discord, and 4chan, according to BuzzFeed News.

"We are working closely with law enforcement to provide any assistance we can," a Discord spokesman told The Times in a statement. "In the meantime, our hearts go out to Bianca's family and loved ones."

Devins' family described her as "a talented artist, a loving sister, daughter, and cousin, and a wonderful young girl, taken from us all too soon."

"Bianca's smile brightened our lives," the family said in a statement. "She will always be remembered as our Princess."

Devins graduated from T.R. Proctor High School last month and would have attended Mohawk Valley Community College with a major in psychology in the fall, BuzzFeed News reported.

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