Vanessa Bryant files lawsuit against LA County Sheriff over photos of Kobe Bryant helicopter crash site
Vanessa Bryant has sued Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva and his department over photos of the helicopter crash site where her husband, Kobe, and daughter, Gianna, died in January.
Per TMZ, Bryant is suing on the grounds of emotional distress and alleging deputies in the department documented the site using cellphone pictures:
According to the lawsuit, obtained by TMZ, “no fewer than 8 sheriff’s deputies at the crash site, pulled out their personal cell phones and snapped photos of the dead children, parents and coaches. The deputies took these photos for their own personal gratification.”
The lawsuit goes onto allege the photos were the subject of conversation within the sheriff’s dept … with deputies showing their colleagues the pictures that had no investigative purpose.
The lawsuit notes how the photos were exposed … when a deputy was at a bar and showed the photos to a woman he was trying to impress. The bartender heard the conversation, blew the whistle and called the sheriff’s department.
Vanessa also reportedly claims Villanueva promised said deputies they would not be fired if they deleted the photos, while stating the Bryant family essentially learned of the photos through the media. This lawsuit is the next step of the legal process after Vanessa previously filed a legal claim in May. This claim served as a “precursor” to the lawsuit, which was submitted last week.
Vanessa Bryant has understandably been very emotional throughout the grieving process, at one point taking to Instagram to explain why she and her daughters had to block tribute accounts. Kobe Bryant continues to receive plenty of tributes even months after his tragic passing.
The lawsuit seeks “unspecified” damages, with Villanueva, LA County and the sheriff’s department all listed as defendants.