A bill sponsored by Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon creating criminal and civil penalties for disseminating personal images has passed the Assembly.

Buttenschon’s legislation would establish the crimes of unlawful dissemination of a personal image in the first and second degrees and create a right of private action for such offenses.

In July of 2019, 17-year-old Bianca Devins of Utica was killed and her attacker posted graphic photos of her body to various social media platforms.

The response to the spread of these photographs by social media sites, including Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter, has been widely criticized as slow and inconsistent said Buttenschon.

He also sent them directly to members of Devins’ family.

“Nearly three years ago, the life of 17-year-old Bianca Devins was cut short in a senseless attack of violence,” said Buttenschon.  “Her tragic death was exploited for likes and follows after her attacker posted pictures of her body to various body to various social media sites. Nobody should ever have to endure a trauma like this. Bianca and her family deserve peace, and this legislation would ensure that those who share images online to degrade or humiliate others will be held accountable for their actions.”

 

The legislation, which has passed in the Assembly for a second time, now goes to the Senate.

Brandon Clark of Cicero was sentenced to 25-years to life in prison in march of last year following his February 2020 guilty plea to second-degree murder in slaying of Bianca Devins on Boilermaker Sunday in 2019.

Clark admitted to killing Devins after seeing her kiss another man at a concert the two attended in New York City the night before.

Prosecutors who described the two characterized them as having a relationship, but stopped short of calling them a couple.

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