At least eight Los Angeles County Sheriff deputies allegedly involved in taking and sharing disturbing photos from the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and 7 others are facing an investigation into their conduct.
According to KABC, Sheriff Alex Villanueva confirmed that at least eight deputies were supposedly involved, and could face possible disciplinary action, adding that the photos have since been deleted.
“When I first got word of this information I just felt devastated,” the sheriff said, describing his reaction to hearing about the sharing of the photos. “These families of the victims have suffered enough already.
“To have any action of our deputies compile their suffering, that breaks my heart. It’s a sense of betrayal because these are my own employees,” he added, according to CBS Los Angeles.
Villanueva emphasized that only two groups of people should have been taking photos at the crash site, the county coroner’s office, and investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board. Anyone else would have “illicit photos.”
He added that while the department has a policy against taking and sharing photos of crime scenes, the same policy does not apply to accidents…something Villanueva is now working to change.
Vanessa Bryant, the widow of the basketball legend, expressed her own devastation over the sharing of the graphic photos, calling for an investigation into the matter.