Mother of woman killed in botched butt injection lashes out in court

The family of Latesha Bynum (pictured) faced down her accused killer in court. (Photo: WCBS)
The family of Latesha Bynum (pictured) faced down her accused killer in court. (Photo: WCBS)

“They killed my baby,” said Bertie Bynum as she left a Manhattan courtroom.

The accused, Allison Spence, 44, of Queens, was arraigned Friday on charges of second-degree manslaughter and unauthorized practice of a profession. Spence allegedly gave silicone injections to Latesha Bynum, 31, who later died as a result.

According to sources speaking to the New York Post, Bynum had gone to a black-market clinic in an unmarked building on East 21st Street near First Avenue in Gramercy Park on July 15.

Two hours after the procedure, Bynum complained of chest pains and dizziness. She called 911 and was rushed to Mount Sinai St. Luke’s hospital, but was declared brain-dead shortly after arriving and taken off life support two weeks later.

Spence apparently acted as a nurse for the cosmetic injections. A fake physician associated with the case remains at large. Spence and the fake doctor allegedly opened the cash-only clinic in 2013. Spence’s bail has been set at $1 million.

Spence’s sister, Lisa, admitted to the New York Daily News that her sister has no medical background. “My sister told me she just massaged the body muscles where she got injected,” she said. “My sister never injected anybody.”

Bynum’s family are now making funeral arrangements, and their attorney has said they plan to file a $1 billion lawsuit. Bynum is survived by her mother, brother, and two daughters.

Deadly butt injections are not uncommon. Women seeking Kardashian-style curves on the cheap will sometimes turn to black-market doctors for the procedure. In June 2015, Kelly Mayhew, 34, died in Queens after a phony plastic surgeon injected silicone into her buttocks.

The quest for curves is not only an American phenomenon. In May, Brazilian police raided an alleged black-market clinic in Rio de Janeiro offering butt-lifts to women. Footage of the raid was captured by police and shared online.

In that case women were being injected with methacrylate, also known as “bone cement,” typically used for setting joints or in shaping bone structure in reconstructive surgery. The practice is banned in the U.S. and U.K.

Buttock augmentation, more commonly known as the “Brazilian butt lift,” involves injecting fat or synthetic material into the buttocks to give them a fuller shape. Unless performed by professionals, the consequences, as evident from these cases, can be severe.

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