A federal judge on Wednesday denied a bid to dismiss a lawsuit over photos of the Kobe Bryant helicopter crash.

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Los Angeles County requested a judge to dismiss the suit filed by his widow Vanessa Bryant, over pictures taken at the scene of the 2020 crash that killed the NBA star, their 13-year-old daughter and seven others.

According to reports, U.S. District Judge John F. Walter concluded “there are genuine issues of material fact for trial” and denied Los Angeles County’s motion to dismiss the case.


The Daily News reported:

The 39-year-old widow said that she is infuriated “that the people I trusted to protect the dignity of my husband and daughter abused their positions to obtain souvenirs of their deaths, as though possessing pictures of their remains somehow makes them special. I imagine Kobe watching over what occurred at that crash scene, and I am overcome with anger and emotion,” according to the declaration.

In quotes taken from a court-ordered deposition, Sheriff Alex Villanueva said that taking and sharing such images was “wildly inappropriate” and “disgusting” and revealed efforts to “take away a trophy” from the scene of the deaths.


Bryant claims the photos were shared by county employees at a bar and other settings not relevant to the investigation.

Her lawsuit seeks undisclosed damages on claims of emotional distress, violation of privacy and civil rights violations.

The case now goes to trial, which is set to begin next month.

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