Vanessa Bryant sobbed during opening statements Wednesday regarding her lawsuit as images taken of Kobe Bryant’s corpse were described in a Los Angeles courtroom.
Vanessa is suing the Los Angeles County Sheriff Office after she alleged deputies took photographs of her husband, NBA icon Kobe Bryant and her daughter Gigi following a helicopter crash in January 2020 and shared them with their colleagues, according to TMZ.
Her lawyer described the images as being “pictures of broken bodies, close-ups of limbs and burnt flesh,” and that the conduct of the deputies “poured salt into an unhealable wound,” according to TMZ.
Vanessa Bryant dissolved into tears as her lawyer addressed the jury in opening statements, saying the 8 L.A. County Sheriff’s deputies who took photos of the bodies of her husband and child took the pictures “for a laugh like they were souvenirs.” https://t.co/ju4X3d37i1
— TMZ (@TMZ) August 10, 2022
One of the deputies allegedly showed the pictures to a woman at a local bar, according to TMZ. The bartender noticed and ultimately reported this incident, which is now unraveling before the courts, the outlet reported.
The lawyer played the deposition of a Sheriff’s detective who referenced the images as showing “piles of meat,” according to TMZ. He also added that the deputies appeared to take the pictures “for a laugh like they were souvenirs.”
Vanessa Bryant was overcome with emotion as the trial began for her lawsuit against Los Angeles County. https://t.co/EBE4BpWvXZ
— Entertainment Tonight (@etnow) August 11, 2022
Vanessa continued to sob after her lawyer addressed the jury and described what was captured in the unauthorized photographs. Her attorney addressed the trauma associated with this tragedy, stating that she lives “in fear, anxiety and terror” at the mere thought that someday she or her family will see the gory photos, according to TMZ. (RELATED: REPORT: Man Dies After Walking Into Helicopter Blades)
Vanessa’s court documents claim the conduct of the deputies have caused her severe emotional distress and were a complete invasion of her family’s privacy.
California Governor Gavin Newsom passed a bill called the Kobe Bryant Act in 2020, outlawing first responders sharing images of a deceased individual from a crime scene unless the purpose is directly related to the case, according to TMZ.