Kobe Bryant's widow tells jury she fears fatal chopper crash photos will spread, Latest Basketball News - The New Paper

Kobe Bryant's widow tells jury she fears fatal chopper crash photos will spread

LOS ANGELES (AFP, BLOOMBERG) Kobe Bryant's widow has said she is afraid to go on social media because she might suddenly see photos show up of body parts from a helicopter crash in which the former National Basketball Association star and their daughter were killed.

Vanessa Bryant took the stand on Friday (Aug 19) in a trial in Los Angeles where she sued the county and the sheriff's department over emergency response personnel sharing photos from the crash site in January 2020, claiming it was negligent and an invasion of her privacy.

The mother of three surviving children said she sued because she wanted to know what happened with the photo sharing and find a solution to prevent a recurrence in the future.

"I live in fear every day of being on social media and having these photographs pop up," she told the jury of 10 people.

"It's like Covid. Once it's spread, you can't get it back. I want to remember my husband and my daughter the way that they were.

"I'm willing to go through hell and back to get justice for them."

Bryant, widely regarded as one of the best basketball players of all time, who spent his 20-year career playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, was killed with his daughter and seven others when the helicopter they were travelling in crashed in cloudy weather.

The jury heard earlier in the trial that a sheriff's department deputy shared grisly photos from the scene with a fellow deputy. Another deputy admitted showing pictures to a bartender while a firefighter showed photos on his phone to a small group who were attending an awards ceremony.

Vanessa also told the jury that she received an Instagram message from someone threatening to leak pictures of her husband's body. She said she disabled comments on her account after that.

Christopher Chester, who sued along with Vanessa, told the jury earlier that his lawyer had received a phone call from a woman claiming someone had a link to the photos and was offering to show them "for a fee". Chester's wife and daughter were among those killed in the helicopter crash.

Lawyers for Los Angeles County do not dispute that the photos were taken, but insist they have never been made public and have now been deleted.

Kobe BryantAIR CRASHESCOURT & CRIMELos Angeles Lakers