Great Britain

Kobe Bryant crash photos ‘had no investigative purpose’ and were taken for ‘gratification’ of cops, lawsuit says

NO RESPECT

VANESSA Bryant has sued LA cops claiming they took photos of her husband's crash site for "gratification" and that the images "had no investigative purpose."

Sheriff’s deputies allegedly took cell phone pictures of the helicopter disaster victims including Bryant's daughter Gianna, 13, and the legendary basketball player, 41.

The suit says: “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 also claims that the photos had become the subject of discussions at the office with officers showing colleagues the graphic images.

It is claimed the photos shown to colleagues had no investigative purposes.

A deputy trying to impress a woman at a bar also showed the pictures, according to the lawsuit.

It is alleged the bartender heard the conversation between the official and the woman and raised the alarm by calling the sheriff’s department.

According to Bryant, Sheriff Alex Villanueva tried to cover up by telling officers they will not have to face any discipline if they delete the pictures from their phones.

It is alleged in the lawsuit that Villanueva’s actions resulted to destruction of evidence.

He also did not inform the victim’s family about the photos, only finding out when news broke in the media, says the suit.

“Ms. Bryant feels ill at the thought of strangers gawking at images of her deceased husband and child, and she lives in fear that she or her children will one day confront horrific images of their loved ones online", the suit says.

The L.A. County Sheriff’s Department told TMZ: “Shortly following this tragic crash, Sheriff Villanueva sponsored legislation which now makes it a crime for public safety personnel to take and share non-official pictures of this nature”.

Basketball legend Bryant and Gianna died in a helicopter crash on January 26 while on their way to basketball practice in Los Angeles.

Their private helicopter crashed in the mountains of Calabasasm and killed all seven passengers on board.

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