What to Know
Authorities are investigating the death of a teen girl who was found outside a vehicle in Utica early Sunday; a man was found badly injured
The girl was identified as Bianca Devins, 17, and the man as Brandon Clark, 20, but circumstances of the death were not immediately clear
Police said they were aware of reports that a photo of the dead teen -- with unspecified injuries -- was posted to social media
Authorities are investigating the death of a teen girl who was found outside a vehicle in Utica early Sunday — a murder investigation about which few details are known but appears to have involved an image posted to Instagram.
The Utica Police Department said Monday that they responded to a number of calls "regarding an attempt to locate" two individuals and were directed to Poe Street, where they found 17-year-old Bianca Devins dead and a severely injured man, later identified as 21-year-old Brandon Clark of Bridgewater.
"The female is outside the vehicle, and the male was located outside the vehicle. At this point what occurred and when it occurred is part of the investigation," Lt. Bryan Coromato said in a statement.
Clark was taken to a hospital, where he underwent surgery for his injuries. He was out of surgery by Monday but was sedated and could not speak with officers, Coromato said.
Coromato also said Utica police were aware there were social media postings of Devins dead — with unspecified injuries. He said he could not confirm whether the photos were authentic, and said the department plans to meet with Devins' family later Monday. When asked about the "murder weapon," though, Coromato did say, "It appears to have been a sharp instrument." No additional details were released.
The social media role wasn't immediately clear Monday -- but two separate companies issued statements on the matter.
Instagram issued a statement Monday saying it had removed an image from account @yesjuliet for violating its policies and had taken steps to prevent other users from re-uploading the image to the social platform. The account referenced has an associated name of Brandon Andrew Clark and lists a birthday of Oct. 6, 1997 along with a date of death -- Sunday.
A separate company, Social Media Group, issued a statement saying it was aware of social media reports claiming that a young woman had been killed by someone she met on a dating app. Police did not address that immediately.
Cops launched an investigation after the parents of one of the two people involved called authorities to report concern "about some things that were happening in the relationship," Coromato said, but he declined to describe the nature of the relationship or provide other details.
The investigation is ongoing.