After winning $15 million in August for alleged leaked photos of her late husband Kobe Bryant and 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant at the helicopter crash site that killed them, Vanessa Bryant has just scored another victory. Per People, she reached a $28.5 million total settlement in the matter from the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Kobe and Gianna perished in a tragic helicopter crash in January of 2020. “Today marks the successful culmination of Mrs. Bryant’s courageous battle to hold accountable those who engaged in this grotesque conduct,” Vanessa’s lawyer Luis Li told the outlet in a statement.
“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 put an end to this practice.”
Along with the NBA legend and his daughter, seven other passengers on the ill-fated January 26, 2020, flight perished. They were John Altobelli, 56, his wife Keri, 46, and their daughter, Alyssa, 13; Sarah Chester, 45, and daughter Payton, 13; pilot Ara Zobayan, 50; and assistant coach Christina Mauser, 38.
Vanessa previously testified about the trauma caused by the leaked photos allegedly taken by “no fewer than eight sheriff’s deputies,” whom she claimed, “at the crash site pulled out their personal cell phones and snapped photos of the dead children, parents, and coaches.” She also accused the L.A. Sherriff’s Deputies involved of “severe emotional distress” over the alleged impropriety.
“I just remember not wanting to react cause the girls were in the room,” the mom of three testified on August 19, 2022 about learning of the photos. “I said, ‘I can’t do this.’… And I bolted out of the house, and I ran to the side of the house so the girls couldn’t see me. I wanted to run… down the block and just scream. I can’t escape my body. I can’t escape what I feel. … I was blindsided again, devastated, hurt. I trusted them. I trusted them not to do these things.”