Lil Tay’s family has denied news of her death after a statement posted on her Instagram account on Wednesday said the star’s death at 15 was “sudden and tragic” and “entirely unexpected.” It also said that her older brother Jason Tian had also died, and that both deaths were under investigation.
However, on Thursday, TMZ reported that the social media star was in fact still alive and that her Instagram had been hacked. The report cited a statement from Lil Tay’s family, which said that she and her brother were “safe and alive” but “completely heartbroken.”
The statement said that Lil Tay’s Instagram account had been “compromised by a third party” and used to spread “jarring misinformation and rumors” about her, including the false claim that she had died. Lil Tay’s legal name is Tay Tian, not “Claire Hope,” as the hacker had claimed.
Some social media users have claimed that Lil Tay’s family faked her death in order just for some social media Buzz. This claim is based on the fact that Lil Tay’s father, Christopher Hope, and former manager, Jason Tian, had previously refused to confirm or deny her death. Hope declined to comment on the Instagram post and declined to answer whether his daughter was alive.