Rapper Lil Tay, 14, is NOT dead: Controversial influencer confirms she is alive and says her Instagram was HACKED after post on her verified account ‘confirmed’ both she and her brother Jason Tian had passed away
- The 14-year-old has finally spoken out to shut down reports that she and her sibling had passed – which were sparked by a post on her official Instagram
- More than 24 hours after the reports first surfaced, the teenager has claimed that her account was ‘compromised by a third party’
- She did not reveal why it took her so long to speak out and deny the rumors
Influencer and rapper Lil Tay has confirmed she is alive after a post on her official verified Instagram account claimed that both she and her brother Jason Tian had ‘unexpectedly’ died.
The 14-year-old controversial online star – who shot to fame at age nine after starring in a series of vulgar rap-style videos – has finally spoken out to shut down claims that she and her sibling had passed away, claiming that her Instagram account was ‘hacked.’
‘I want to make it clear that my brother and I are safe and alive, but I’m completely heartbroken, and struggling to even find the right words to say,’ Lil Tay – who was born Claire Hope but has now confirmed her legal name is Tay Tian – told TMZ today, more than 24 hours after the news of her alleged death first broke.
‘It’s been a very traumatizing 24 hours. All day yesterday, I was bombarded with endless heartbreaking and tearful phone calls from loved ones all while trying to sort out this mess.’
The teenager – who hit the headlines back in 2018 amid claims she had been abused by her father Christopher Hope and exploited by her brother – neglected to reveal why she took more than 24 hours to confirm she is alive and well.
Influencer and rapper Lil Tay has confirmed she is alive – more than 24 hours after a post on her official Instagram account announced that she and her brother had died
A post shared on the teenager’s Instagram account on Wednesday stated that Lil Tay and her 21-year-old brother Jason Tian had both died, referring to her by her birth name, Claire Hope
In her statement to TMZ, Lil Tay – whose real name is Tay Tian – confirmed that her brother Jason is also alive
Speaking about the post that sparked the death rumors, Tay insisted that her Instagram account ‘was compromised by a third party’ and ‘used to spread jarring misinformation and rumors’ about her.
The young star also confirmed that she now had access to her account again.
She went on to reveal that she no longer goes by her birth name, Claire Hope, which was the moniker used in the now-deleted phony death announcement, explaining that she now goes by the legal name Tay Tian, having seemingly dropped her estranged father’s surname in favor of her mother, Angela’s.
Soon after Lil Tay’s statement was released, social media erupted with speculation over the legitimacy of her claims, with many users questioning why it had taken her so long to address the phony death rumors – while others speculated that the whole hoax was a desperate bid for publicity.
‘So is Lil Tay & her brother dead or alive? Because the way that statement was worded and then the way it took a whole 24 hours to denounce is still very weird,’ one person wrote.
‘Let’s say hypothetically Lil Tay’s Instagram was hacked… what would be the motive for saying the brother is dead too?? Like this whole thing confusing,’ another stated.
After the death announcement was posted on Lil Tay’s Instagram – which had until then be inactive since June 2018 – the influencer gained more than 200,000 new followers.
The phony death post, which has since been removed, read, ‘It is with a heavy heart that we share the devastating news of our beloved Claire’s sudden and tragic passing.
‘We have no words to express the unbearable loss and indescribable pain. This outcome was entirely unexpected, and has left us all in shock. Her brother’s passing adds an even more unimaginable depth to our grief.
The news of Tay’s so-called death became shrouded in serious mystery on Wednesday afternoon when her own father, Christopher Hope, said he couldn’t confirm if she was alive
Lil Tay’s mother Angela Tian (seen with her daughter) and father Christopher became embroiled in an ugly legal fight over their daughter back in 2018
Tay – who was born Claire Hope but appears to have changed her name to take her mother Angela’s surname – said she was ‘heartbroken’ by the fake news of her death
‘During this time of immense sorrow, we kindly ask for privacy as we grieve this overwhelming loss, as the circumstances surrounding Claire and her brother’s passing are still under investigation.’
It concluded: ‘Claire will forever remain in our hearts, her absence leaving an irreplaceable void that will be felt by all who knew and loved her.’
In the wake of the post’s publication, multiple news outlets around the world reported on Tay’s death – which quickly became shrouded in sinister mystery when her own father stated that he was unable to confirm whether she was alive or dead.
Meanwhile local authorities in Vancouver, where Christopher lives, and Los Angeles, where Lil Tay had been living with her mother, had no record of any investigation into the deaths of Claire or her brother Jason when contacted by DailyMail.com.
An officer with the LAPD noted that the lack of records relating to Lil Tay and her brother suggest that ‘they are not, in fact, dead or that [their deaths] did not occur in LA’.
‘We have no information on either of these two individuals Claire Hope or Jason Tian being killed or dying in Los Angeles,’ he stated.
‘If the LA county medical examiners has nothing on either of them either, that would lead me to believe they are not, in fact, dead, or that it did not occur in LA.’
Lil Tay’s former manager Harry Tsang added further confusion when he released a cryptic statement about the news, refusing to ‘confirm’ that the rapper had in fact died.
She did not reveal why it took her so long to shut down the rumors of her death
Even Tay’s own friends appear to have been left in the dark, with one of the influencer’s ‘closest’ pals, Destiny Jenkins, posting a tribute to her hours before she announced she’s alive
Lil Tay was skyrocketed into the spotlight back in 2017, after she began posting a series controversial and bizarre videos online, which showed her using the N-word and getting into fights with strangers.
She quickly racked up millions of followers – but her bizarre clips left some people on the web concerned for her wellbeing.
Soon, rumors began to swirl that she was being forced to partake in the videos by her family, which were only fueled when footage that seemingly showed her then-16-year-old brother, Jason, coaching her on what to say made its way around the web.
Lil Tay sparked more concern in July 2018, when she posted a chilling message asking for help to her Instagram Stories, only to suddenly erase all of her videos hours later.
Four months later, an anonymous person started sharing harrowing posts to her account in which they claimed that her ‘abusive’ dad, Chris Hope, was trying to take her away from her mother.
Chris denied the allegations, claiming that he was actually protecting her. He insisted that he was trying to ‘stop things that he felt were dangerous to her physical and mental health and to her future’ and separate her from people who were motivated by ‘the possibility of making money off of her.’
Then, three years later, her brother issued a desperate plea for help through a GoFundMe page, in which he claimed that Lil Tay was ‘fighting for her life, future and freedom’ after being ‘physically and mentally’ abused by her ‘absentee’ father, who wanted to ‘gain control’ of her and her earnings.
He alleged that Chris had stolen millions of dollars from his sister, took control of her career, forced her into silence, and was now trying to gain full custody over her.
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