Yekaterina Semochkina, who was known online as Ekaterina Karaglanova, a 24-year-old Russian social media influencer, was found dead in a suitcase on Saturday. Karaglanova was known for sharing posts on her travels, fashion, and beauty looks with her over 94,000 Instagram followers.
According to BBC, Ekaterina was found dead in a suitcase in her Moscow apartment; her throat had been slit, but there was no evidence of a struggle or murder weapon found at the scene. Her parents were the ones who found her after they had tried to reach her for several days with no response.
On Wednesday morning, CNN reported that a suspect in the murder had been arrested. In a statement, the Russian Ministry of Interior said “As a result of operational search activities, the police officers at the Moscow Directorate of the MVD of Russia in Moscow established the location and arrested the suspect in the murder of a female social media personality in the apartment of a residential building on Pyryeva Street,” and that the male suspect was brought in for questioning.
Here’s what you need to know about Ekaterina Karaglanova:
1. Her Last Instagram Post Was on July 22, & She Tagged Moscow as the Location
On Instagram, Ekaterina documented her travels with glamorous shots in beautiful locations, enjoying luxury experiences. She kept a photo record of each place she visited on her profile’s highlights and used the hashtag “#kati_travels” in conjunction with her posts.
Her last Instagram post was shared on July 22. Although it was taken during her recent trip to Corfu, she geotagged her location as Moscow, suggesting she had returned home from her latest travels.
In the caption (translated to English from Russian by the Instagram app), she wrote “Hello Moscow! here comes our short but very cheerful trip to corfu… Actually, to be honest, I don’t like a long rest. I travel often, but in every country I spend no more than 3-5 days. The longest journey of [my] life was in Israel with the family, when I was years 14. We went to visit for a whole month, covered the whole country. Now I prefer to travel very often, but briefly, studying and work do not let go. But the impressions of such short trips remain the brightest.”
2. She Recently Graduated Medical School With a Focus in Dermatovenerology
In her Instagram bio, she says she is an MD, and a “clinical officer of the department of dermatovenerology.” The Sun reported that she recently graduated from Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University, and was a resident at a medical school in Moscow.
In one post, she shared her story of how she decided to become a doctor, revealing that she knew she wanted a future profession in medicine in 8th grade and worked hard to pursuit of her medical career. She wrote “The first three years in the university can be boldly called a quest for survival,” adding that since she was working and studying at the same time, “for a few years [she] didn’t have free time” at all.
At the end of the caption, she said she was currently “passing a clinical tour at the department of dermatovenerology and oncology,” but that she was still in the process of learning what type of medicine she likes best.
3. She Was Planning to Travel for Her Birthday With Her New Boyfriend Just Before Her Death
According to BBC News, Ekaterina would have celebrated her 25th birthday on July 30 and was planning on traveling to the Netherlands with her new boyfriend for the occasion. According to Daily Mail, her boyfriend was an older man in his early 50s.
As an additional gruesome detail in her murder, CNN reports that the suitcase in which her dead body was found was the suitcase she had packed for her birthday trip.
4. Police Say Jealousy Was a Potential Motive in Her Murder
When news broke of Ekaterina’s death and the investigation of her murder, The Telegraph reported that police were considering jealousy as a possible motive, especially since she had started a new relationship. CCTV footage showed an alleged former boyfriend of Ekaterina entering her apartment building days before she disappeared and leaving with a suitcase.
According to Daily Mail, Ekaterina’s killer was identified as 33-year-old Maxim Gareyev. They report that, in a law enforcement video, he admitted: “I stabbed her with a knife at least five times around her neck and chest.” He claimed his reason was “She insulted me multiple times. She was insulting my sexual prowess and earning power.”
5. She Participated in Beauty Pageants & Her Followers Compared Her Appearance to Audrey Hepburn
Ekaterina’s good looks and great figure are clear across her social media feed, so it is no surprise that she chose to participate in beauty pageants. Her Instagram bio says she was 1st runner-up in the Miss Moscow City beauty pageant, and The Telegraph reports that she participated in the Miss Maxim pageant last year.
Followers noticed Ekaterina’s resemblance to the iconic movie star Audrey Hepburn, and the influencer fed into the comparison, occasionally posting photos and videos of Hepburn to her Instagram feed and using the hashtag “#audreyhepburn” when sharing close-up photos of her beauty looks.