New details emerged on the brutal murder of UCLA student Brianna Kupfer on Thursday, January 13. Medical reports revealed that Brianna was stabbed 26 times by an unknown murderer while working at the Croft House furniture store in Hancock Park near La Brea Avenue.
Per the postmortem report, 24-year-old Kupfer suffered stab wounds to her entire body. According to officials, she had 20 additional "incises," including the abdomen, pelvis, arms, and legs.
A look into Brianna Kupfer's murder
According to the Los Angeles Police Department, Kupfer was working alone at the Croft House furnishings store on North La Brea Avenue in Hancock Park during the day earlier this year. Shortly after, the accused entered the store and fatally stabbed her. The culprit is identified as Shawn Laval Smith, 31.
Based on multiple reports, the autopsy result came on January 18, which revealed that the victim was stabbed around 26 times in different parts of her body. She suffered 11 chest stab wounds that perforated both of her lungs.
LAPD Lt. John Radke said in a release that Brianna Kupfer has allegedly sent a message via her phone to one of her friends telling her there's someone in the store making her uncomfortable. He said,
"Kupfer sent a text to a friend letting her know that there was someone inside the location that was giving her a bad vibe."
Shortly after the attack, a customer came into the store and found Kupfer lying on the floor, according to the sources.
Police discovered a man leaving the store from video footage and found him the murderer. Police started looking for the young woman's killer and offered a $250,000 reward for his arrest.
According to the LAPD, authorities instantly recognized the individual in the video as Smith, and he was taken into custody on January 19 in Pasadena, California.
Who was Brianna Kupfer?
Brianna Kupfer, 24, was a resident of Pacific Palisades. After graduating from the University of Miami and Brentwood High School, she studied architectural design at UCLA. Additionally, Kupfer was a design consultant for Croft House Furniture.
Riley Rea, co-owner of the Croft House furniture store, told the Los Angeles Times that Brianna joined the company over a year ago and was well-liked by her coworkers. She was also astounded by Kupfer's death and said,
"I'm absolutely devastated for her and her family. It just seems so disgusting and unexpected. Really there are no words to say how shocked we are to lose such a wonderful person."
Days after her untimely death, a small tribute to Brianna Kupfer was set up outside her workplace. She is survived by her parents, sisters Mikaela and Brandon, and brothers Tucker and Brandon.
Smith made an appearance in court in April but did not make a statement because he was having a mental crisis. He is being detained on a $2 million bond.