An upstate New York man is accused of brutally slaying a teenage internet personality he met online and posting pictures of her body to the internet, according to police.
Authorities say Brandon Clark slashed Bianca Devins’ throat early Sunday, nearly decapitating her. They first met online, and met in person two months ago, police told The Daily Beast. Shortly after her murder, Clark posted pictures of her corpse online. He then stabbed himself in front of officers who had been dispatched to search for him, police added.
Devins, 17, a Utica, New York teen, had just graduated high school and was preparing to start a psychology degree at her local community college.
Devins was anonymous to many of her internet friends. Online she was a popular Instagram and Tumblr user. She also frequented 4chan, and ran a Discord server populated with some of her 4chan connections, many of whom knew her as Oxychan.
Two months ago, she met one of those internet friends in person, Utica police Lt. Bryan Coromato told The Daily Beast. Clark, 21, lived in Cicero, New York, approximately an hour away. The two had some form of offline relationship, Coromato said. On Instagram, Devins’ sister wrote that “it wasn’t just an ‘internet boyfriend’ this was a close family friend whom we’ve met and trusted so much. I do not want false information being spread around.”
Utica police said in a statement Monday evening that the two attended a concert together in New York City on Saturday and arrived back in Utica early Sunday. Police believe they had an argument, which precipitated the murder.
Early Sunday morning, Clark began posting gruesome pictures on his Instagram story. One picture showed him covered in blood with the caption “I’m sorry Bianca.” Another, of a dark road, referenced going to Hell. Other photos appeared to show a body under a tarp, and before-and-after images of a self-inflicted knife wound on his neck. Clark’s updated Instagram biography and a post on his Facebook suggested that he planned to kill himself.
Coromato confirmed that the pictures were authentic.
Around the same time, Clark posted an image to Discord showing Devins with her throat cut in a car and a large knife next to her. He also doxxed her, sharing Devins’ full name and hometown, which was unknown to many of her online friends, and included a derogatory remark about Devins and her online following. The pictures spread to multiple misogynistic forums, where some users called for more killings of women and girls.
All the images hit the internet before police were alerted about the killing. Around 7:20 a.m., officers received a call about a person making statements of harm, Coromato said. They were able to triangulate Clark’s location based on his cell phone. When they found him, he began stabbing himself in front of an officer, Coromato said.
Eventually he took out a phone and began taking pictures of himself laying on the tarp that concealed Devins’ body, police said.
Clark was taken into custody and transported to a hospital, where he is sedated and in critical condition, but expected to survive. He has yet to be formally charged in the killing.
“Bianca was a lot of things to so many people,” her stepmother wrote on Facebook. “She was young and beautiful and so full of life. She had been through hell and back conquering her own mental illness and she won. She was getting better. Fighting everyday. She was happy.”