Vanessa Bryant, the widow of the late NBA legend Kobe Bryant, is suing Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva and his department after his deputies allegedly took personal photographs on their phones of the bodies of Kobe and Gianna Bryant at the scene of the deadly helicopter crash in Calabasas.
According to the lawsuit, “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 on to allege that a deputy was at a bar and showed the photos to a woman he was trying to impress. The bartender overheard the conversation, blew the whistle and filed a written complaint with the sheriff’s department.
Vanessa says in the lawsuit that afterwards, Sheriff Villanueva tried to cover it all up by going to the sheriff’s substation that responded to the crash and telling deputies if they deleted the photos they would not face discipline.
The lawsuit also claims that Vanessa is in constant fear the photos will be leaked. She is seeking unspecified damages, including punitive damages, claiming Sheriff Villanueva and the department caused her severe emotional distress.