A bartender busted a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputy who shared graphic photos of the scene of the Kobe Bryant helicopter crash.
The revelation comes after the Los Angeles Times reported that a source told the website that L.A. County Sheriff’s deputies shared graphic images of the helicopter crash site, including gruesome images of the remains of the bodies of the victims.
The victims in the tragic crash included the Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others, including the baseball coach John Altobelli, his wife, Keri, and their daughter Alyssa.
Alyssa Altobelli was Gianna’s teammate at the Mamba Sports Academy.
An L.A. County Sheriff’s trainee deputy shared the images at a bar
The source that spoke with L.A. Times said he saw one of the images on the phone of an official in circumstances not linked with the investigation of the crash.
The Los Angeles Times did not reveal the identity of their source or the officials who allegedly shared the gruesome images. The report also did not say how widely the photos were disseminated.
Multiple L.A. County Sheriff’s deputies, including the trainee deputy, who were at the site of the crash took photos of the wreckage and the remains of the victims. While at a bar a few days later, the trainee deputy allegedly “tried to impress a girl by showing her the photos,” according to TMZ.
A bartender reportedly overheard the conversation between the trainee deputy and the girl and filed a complaint with the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department.
L.A. County Fire Dept. employees also shared the Kobe Bryant crash photos
Cell phone photos of the gruesome aftermath of the crash were also shared at the Lost Hills Sheriff’s substation according to the TMZ report.
The first responders to the crash were officers at the Lost Hills Sheriff’s substation but other deputies from nearby stations were also at the site and took cell phone photos.
According to the report, L.A. Sheriff’s Department officials had known for about three weeks that the photos were also being shared by members of the L.A. County Fire Dept. But it was not clear whether the department immediately took any action to prevent further unauthorized sharing of the photos.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department reportedly responded, saying that the matter was “being looked into.”
The Sheriff’s Department also said that they had contacted the families of the victims about the matter.
Vanessa Bryant sued the company that operated the helicopter
The latest news comes after Monsters and Critics reported that the Kobe Bryant’s widow, Vanessa Bryant, sued Island Express, the company that operated the crashed helicopter, for wrongful death.
According to the lawsuit, the tragic crash was due to negligence by Island Express and the pilot Ara George Zobayan.
The company and the pilot disregarded safety regulations and took a needless risk by flying the helicopter in adverse weather conditions, the lawsuit claims.
Vanessa Bryant is suing for general, economic, and punitive damages.