July 16 (UPI) -- A 21-year-old New York man has been charged with second-degree murder for killing his 17-year-old girlfriend and posting photographs of the crime to social networking sites, authorities said.
The Police Department for the city of Utica, New York said Monday that officers arrested Brandon Clark the day before after receiving reports that he had posted to social media sites about killing his girlfriend, Bianca Devins of Utica, and was threatening to harm himself.
When officers arrived at the scene outside of a Utica residence, Clark was on the ground beside a black SUV and began to repeatedly stab himself in the neck with a knife, causing serious injuries. He then lay down upon a green tarp on the ground, the press release said.
"The officer immediately noticed brown hair protruding from beneath the tarp and inquired as to where the injured female was," the police department said.
Clark told the officer that Devins was under the tarp and then produced a cellphone and attempted to take selfies of himself with Devins's body, the police said.
According to police, officers disarmed the man after a brief struggle and he was then transported to the hospital where he underwent emergency surgery.
The victim's family said in a statement that Devins was "a talented artist, a loving sister, daughter and cousin and a wonderful young girl, taken from us all too soon."
Devins was a recent high school graduate and had intended to attend Mohawk Valley Community College in the fall.
"Bianca's smile brightened our lives," the family said. "She will always be remembered as our princess."
Police said the two had attended a concert Saturday night and sometime early Sunday began arguing, which is when Clark allegedly "produced a large, black-handled knife and used this to inflict the injuries that caused her death."
He is then believed to have distributed pictures of the crime on the Discord video gaming social media platform, members of which then notified local police of the crime.
The police investigation revealed that Clark and Devins had met through Instagram, an image sharing platform, about two months ago and had begun a relationship.
"We can confirm that the images distributed of both the victim and the offender's injuries are authentic and occurred at the time of the incident," the police department said. "We are actively working with the various social media platforms to address the sharing and distribution of these images."