Vanessa Bryant, the widow of NBA legend Kobe Bryant, has settled her $29 million lawsuit against the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
The lawsuit was filed in September 2020 and claimed that sheriff’s deputies shared graphic photos of the helicopter crash that killed Kobe, their daughter Gianna, and several others.
Kobe Bryant Crash Photos Settlement Reaches $29M
As a result of the lawsuit brought against NBA star Kobe Bryant and his family’s daughter Giana, it has been settled. In addition, an accident involving a helicopter in which several people died resulted in their deaths.
Vanessa Bryant has settled with the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department, the Fire Department, and the county to receive a settlement of nearly $29 million.
According to Bryant, after learning the first responders had taken photos on their cell phones, shared them with colleagues, and showed a stranger at a bar the photos, Bryant filed a lawsuit in September 2020.
Bryant’s Children’s Claims Have Been Resolved With A Settlement
A federal jury awarded Bryant $16 million in August for her past and future pain and suffering and the emotional distress she has been experiencing due to deputies and firefighters sharing photos of her late husband and daughter at the scene of the crash.
It is estimated that the sheriff’s department will receive $10 million in damages, and the fire department will receive $6 million in damages. On Tuesday, both parties announced a settlement agreement, resolving the remaining claims, including those of Bryant’s children, and other litigated matters.
In addition to the $12.85 million that the jury awarded Bryant’s family, they will receive an additional $13.4 million from the jury. A portion of the contract relates to her two minor children, and a motion for approval of this portion is expected to be filed by the end of March to get the judge to approve the deal.
Wilson Sonsini attorney Luis Li, representing Mrs. Bryant, said, “This settlement marks the culmination of Mrs. Bryant’s courageous battle to hold accountable those who engaged in this grotesque conduct.”
“She fought for her husband, her daughter, and all those in the community whose deceased family were treated with similar disrespect. We hope her victory at trial and this settlement will end this practice. “
Kobe Bryant Incident Details: What Happened To Kobe Bryant?
When the helicopter carrying Kobe Bryant, Gianna, and seven others crashed into hills west of Los Angeles on Jan. 26, 2020, the former Lakers star and five-time NBA champion were on his way to a youth basketball game. At trial, Hashmall argued that the phone photos taken by deputies and firefighters at the crash scene were crucial to assessing the situation.
However, the pictures were shared among county sheriffs and fire department employees. Some employees played video games and attended a banquet, while others played games and cards. Several of their spouses, as well as a bartender at the bar where a deputy was drinking at one point, witnessed the incident as well.
Li told jurors the close-up photos had no official or investigative purpose and were simply a matter of “visual gossip” that she shared based on her gruesome curiosity. As a result of the sheriff’s swift and appropriate action in deleting the photos, Hashmall said the sheriff did the right thing.
It was during the 11-day trial that Vanessa Bryant tearfully testified that news of the photos compounded the grief she was still experiencing one month after losing her husband and daughter. She still suffers panic attacks when she thinks the images could still be out there and that her daughters might find them online someday.
This case has raised important questions about privacy, accountability, and ethical journalism. Moreover, it highlights the need for strict regulations on how law enforcement officers handle sensitive material and how media outlets should approach stories involving tragedy.
This settlement will set a precedent for similar cases so families can find justice when someone violates their right to privacy during grief. If you were to comment on the incident, what would you say? Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below.