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Vanessa Bryant Wins Lawsuit Against LA County Over Kobe Bryant Crash Images

A look into the high-profile lawsuit filed by late NBA legends wife Vanessa Bryant against the Los Angeles County over photos that were taken at the site of the tragic helicopter crash that sadly took the lives of nine individuals.

Vanessa Bryant at LA County Court
Credit: Ringo Chiu/Shutterstock

A look into the high-profile lawsuit filed by late NBA legends wife Vanessa Bryant against Los Angeles County over photos that were taken at the site of the tragic helicopter crash that sadly took the lives of nine individuals.

Kobe Bryant was not only an NBA basketball legend who notoriously helped lead the LA Lakers basketball team to five championships but also an entrepreneur, director, and, most importantly, a loving ‘girl dad.’ In January 2020, Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna were among nine fatalities in a devastating accident involving Bryant’s helicopter crashing into the Calabasas hills in Los Angeles.

The accident became even more devastating when it was revealed shortly after their passing that agencies and employees of Los Angeles County had shared photos that were taken at the site of the plane crash, with some of the images containing highly graphic details of human remains.

Despite the lawyers who represent LA County stating that taking photographs of crime and accident scenes is a common practice to provide sufficient evidence, following this news, Vanessa Bryant, the wife of the late NBA legend, filed a lawsuit against LA County seeking over $10 million in emotional reparations, accusing employees of negligence and an invasion of her privacy by sharing the photos around the department “…without any legitimate purpose”. In her testimony, Ms. Bryant recalled to the jury the moment that she was informed of the sharing of the photos, stating how she “…felt like I wanted to run down the block and just scream”.

The trial began on August 10th; however recently concluded on August 25th, with Ms. Bryant awarded $15 million by the jury. Despite the vast amount, the lawyers representing the claimant still made it apparent that “…she has suffered and continues to suffer severe emotional distress. It is already tough enough that Ms. Bryant has to experience this heartache and loss”. Following the verdict that ruled in favor of Ms. Bryant, she announced this week that the remnants of her lawsuit would be donated to the Mamba and Mambacita Foundation in honor and memory of her late husband and daughter Kobe and Gianna Bryant. The non-profit foundation offers sports education to underserved athletes, striving to promote the vision of gender equality within sports, founded through the joint visions of both Kobe and Gianna Bryant.

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