A federal jury awarded $16 million in damages to Kobe Bryant’s widow, Vanessa Bryant. The case stemmed from Los Angeles County firefighters and sheriff’s deputies sharing photos from the NBA legend’s death scene.
After deliberating for over four hours, the jurors unanimously sided with Vanessa that L.A. County invaded her privacy and caused emotional distress. Co-plaintiff Christopher Chester won a $15 million verdict.
“While we disagree with the jury’s findings as to the County’s liability, we believe the monetary award shows that jurors didn’t believe the evidence supported the Plaintiffs’ request of $75 million for emotional distress,” stated Los Angeles County attorney Mira Hashmall.
Kobe Bryant died on January 26, 2020, when the helicopter he was traveling in crashed into the side of a mountain in Calabasas, California. The 5-time NBA champion was 41 years old.
Eight other people, including Bryant’s 13-year-old daughter Gianna, also died in the accident. Chris Chester’s wife and daughter were among the victims killed that day thirty miles northwest of Downtown Los Angeles.
“All for you! I love you! JUSTICE for Kobe and Gigi! #Betonyourself #MambaDay 8•24•22 💜💛💜💛 #MambaMentality,” wrote Vanessa Bryant on Instagram. The $31 million verdict was announced on Kobe Bryant Day in the city of Los Angeles.