Yesterday around 7:30 AM EST users of Discord were horrified to see posts of their favorite rising star sitting in a car seat covered in blood from a slash on her throat. The young woman was later identified as 17-year-old Bianca Devins, a rising social media star on the website Instagram. As soon as the news broke of her death, so did the floodgates of the internet court of public opinion where a deep divide was established and sides picked.
The tragedy of this incident is only made worse by the fact that the grisly images of Devins’s body are still circulating around Instagram and 4Chan by trolls and disturbingly angry individuals who applaud her death.
The trolls are not where it ends sadly. Almost immediately after the announcement of Devins’s death, a massive wave of misinformation surrounding the incident spread like the rage virus in 28 Days Later. Social media stars, streamers, and YouTubers have fallen victim to the half-truths and started trending #RIPBianca and partially parroting the false rhetoric.
The main crux of the misleading narrative is that Bianca Devins was murdered by a stalker. Stalking is a common problem with social media stars (particularly female ones) especially ones that use Instagram or vlog were, in turn, a determined individual can (and have) used landmarks in videos/photos to determine where the object of their affection lives. Another take on the events is that the murderer was someone Bianca turned down or rejected his advances. Some even claimed it was a guy she trolled publically on discord. The truth is far simpler… the killer was someone she knew.
It was confirmed by both Devins’s and the perpetrator’s families that 21-year-old Brandon Clark was indeed in a relationship with the young woman after the two met on Instagram, and he was described as a “family friend” by Devins’s sister. Devins and Clark attended a concert in New York City and got into an argument at the venue. The two drove back to Devin’s hometown of Utica, New York where Clark drove his vehicle to the end of a dead-end street where he and Devins continued to argue.
It’s believed at this moment that Clark took out a knife and attacked Devins resulting in her death. Afterward, Clark took pictures of her body and shared them on discord and took pictures of his own self-inflicted injuries on Instagram. Users of the apps alerted the local police who then located an awaiting Clark. Shortly afterward a new picture was posted to Instagram of a selfie taken of Clark laying on a green tarp with stab wounds to his neck.
What occurred in between the last two posts is something I’m sure police won’t forget. After arriving on scene officers saw a bloody Clark standing in the street with a knife. Clark told officers that he just killed his girlfriend before stabbing himself repeatedly in the neck as an officer approached him. As officers rushed to Clark, he crawled on top of a green tarp that was nearby and pulled out his phone and took a selfie before police wrestled him into custody. Police soon noticed hair sticking out from under the tarp and asked Clark who it was and he told them before being taken to the hospital where doctors saved his life.
Brandon Clark has been charged with second-degree murder and if convicted he could face 25 to life. The images he took of Bianca Devins’s body are still circulating on Instagram in which users are combating the spread of the images with posting pictures of pink clouds to flood out the horrid imagery. Discord has succeeded in removing the vile imagery from their platform and offered heartfelt condolences to Devins’s family, while Instagram has yet to even get a grasp on eliminating the pictures.