Vanessa Bryant emotional over leaked crash photos : 'I feel devastated, hurt and betrayed'

2022-08-20 09:43

Kobe Bryant's wife, Vanessa, broke down in tears during her testimony before the Los Angeles County court over leaked photos from her late husband's fatal helicopter crash. 

Credit: AP Photo/Jae C. Hong
Credit AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

The widow of Kobe Bryant, Vanessa, appeared emotional, often crying and struggling to maintain her composure, in her testimony before the Los Angeles County court.

Bryant testified Friday she felt betrayed to learn that first responders had taken personal photos of the helicopter crash that killed her daughter and Laker legend husband, Kobe Bryant, and she lives in fear of the images surfacing.

Kobe Bryant's widow, 40, said first responders, who took photos of her dead 13-year-old daughter Gianna, "violated" the girl, and added she was devastated to learn that such images were taken in spite of Sheriff Alex Villanueva assuring her the crash scene would be secured.

Kobe Bryant

Kobe  Bryant
Position: SG
Height: 198 cm
Weight: 93 kg
Birth place: Philadelphia, United States of America

She said she continues to suffer from grief and anxiety at the thought of crash site photos surfacing someday. She said her biggest fear is the photos being published and constantly being spread.

"I feel devastated, hurt and betrayed by the county employees who leaked the photos," she uttered, adding that she has not yet seen those images because she wants to remember her loved ones "as they were."

These statements occurred during the eighth day of trial after the lawsuit that Vanessa Bryant filed against the Los Angeles County after several deputies of the sheriff and members of the Fire Department spread photos of the lifeless bodies of Kobe and his daughter among their acquaintances in a Californian bar.

Vanessa Bryant alleges that the victims' right to privacy has been violated and "great pain" has been caused to the relatives, for which she demands financial compensation from the county whose amount has not yet been specified but which, according to reports, could reach several million dollars.

Kobe's widow couldn't hold back her tears describing how she had to "leave the house " so her family wouldn't see her cry when she read in an article in the Los Angeles Times that the photos were allegedly being spread online.

This lawsuit was filed jointly by Vanessa Bryant and Chris Chester, a widower who lost his wife and daughter, also 13 years old, in this incident on January 26, 2020 in which 9 people died. Along with Chester and Bryant's loved ones, the crash killed Alyssa Altobelli, 14; Keri Altobelli, 46; John Altobelli, 56; Christina Mauser, 38; and pilot Ara Zobayan, 50.

Last year, Vanessa Bryant reached a financial settlement with the helicopter company she had sued for the accident that killed Los Angeles Lakers legend Gianna and seven others. In February 2021, the investigators claimed that the helicopter pilot was disoriented due to the fog and maintained that he did not follow the established piloting protocol when flying in dense cloud cover.

Kobe Bryant is the fourth all-time leading scorer in the NBA (33,643 points) and a legend for the Los Angeles Lakers, with whom he won five NBA rings.




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