Watchdog Group Investigating Allegations L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva Covered Up Leaked Photos of Kobe Bryant’s Death
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Even amidst the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that has crippled numerous people across the globe, it is hard to forget about the helicopter crash that claimed the lives of Kobe and Gianna Bryant, and seven others.

Nearly three months since the accident and it still feels as though it was yesterday that news broke that Bryant had passed away. The NBA and the rest of the sports world mourned his death and it inspired moving tributes that ultimately culminated in a public memorial held at Staples Center.

However, soon after Bryant’s death photos of the crash site had begun to spread on the Internet, causing controversy as it appears they were taken by Sheriff’s deputies who had arrived to the scene. According to Alene Tchekmedyian of the L.A. Times, an investigation has been launched into a possible cover-up attempt by Sheriff Alex Villanueva of the photos’ existence:

Los Angeles County’s chief law enforcement watchdog is seeking to subpoena documents related to allegations that Sheriff Alex Villanueva directed a cover-up after deputies shared graphic photos of the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant, his daughter and seven others.

“The documents are relevant to a pending inquiry into allegations that the Sheriff directed the destruction of evidence and suppressed an administrative investigation to avoid negative publicity,” Inspector General Max Huntsman said in a letter this week to the chair of the Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission.

Vanessa Bryant recently filed a lawsuit against the L.A. County Sherif over the issue as she was personally assured by Villanueva that her family’s privacy would be protected after the incident, but that promise was disgustingly ignored after these photos were leaked.

The emotional distress from this news must have been devastating to the Bryant family and this latest development only exacerbates the issue at hand.

While it is unfortunately not too hard to believe that something like this happened due to Bryant’s standing in the public eye, it is still downright despicable that individuals would not take into consideration what their actions have led to. The loss of loved ones is something that takes a heavy toll on a person, and a scandal of this nature does absolutely nothing to help a family heal after such a traumatic event.

The aftermath of this accident must be incredibly taxing for the Bryant family so hopefully justice is served. Hopefully this blows over soon and Vanessa and her daughters can finally begin to move past this in earnest.

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