Vanessa Bryant sues Los Angeles County Sheriff over photos of Kobe crash site
THE ANGELS: Vanessa Bryant she is suing the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department for unauthorized photographs of the scene in the helicopter accident that killed her husband, NBA legend Kobe Bryant and their 13-year-old daughter, Gianna.
People magazine obtained the legal claim filed on Friday in which Vanessa Bryant seeks damages for emotional distress and mental anguish in the wake of revelations that eight sheriff's department deputies took graphic photos of the scene and shared them with others.
Kobe and Gianna Bryant were among the nine people who died in the January 26 helicopter crash in the mountains west of Los Angeles.
According to the court filing obtained by People, no fewer than eight sheriff's deputies were on the scene taking photos of the dead children, parents and coaches on the cell phone.
As the Department would later admit, there was no investigative purpose for officers to take photographs at the scene of the accident. Rather, the officers took photos for their own personal purposes.
The only people authorized to take pictures of the scene were investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board and the coroner's office.
Sheriff Alex Villanueva acknowledged in March that officers had taken photos of the accident scene after the Los Angeles Times reported the images.
Entertainment news website TMZ.com then reported that a bartender had filed a complaint after listening to a trainee sheriff's assistant showing the footage to a customer in a bar.
Villanueva said in March that the department had identified the agents involved and made sure the photos were destroyed so that they could no longer circulate.
At that time Vanessa Bryant asked for an internal affairs investigation and sanctions for all involved.
Rather than formally investigating the allegations to identify the scope of the spread and contain the spread of the photos, department leaders reportedly told deputies that they would face no discipline if they just deleted the photos, the statement read. presentation, according to People.
The legal claim also states that Vanessa Bryant has been made aware that some of the photos have surfaced on the internet.
This (lawsuit) is all about enforcing liability, protecting victims and making sure no one has to deal with this behavior in the future, a spokesperson for the Bryant family told People.