Kobe Bryant & passengers accused of "directly causing" own deaths in helicopter crash
12 May 2020, 11:38
The representative of the pilot who flew the helicopter carrying Kobe Bryant, his daughter & six other passengers, claims those on board were "negligent".
NBA legend Bryant, 41 and his daughter Gianna Bryant 13, passed away in January when an helicopter crashed into a hillside in California.
The pilot, Ara George Zobayan, has been represented by but his representative has now accused the passengers of "negligence".
Zobayan also passed away in the tragic crash in January.
In response to Bryant's wife Vanessa's lawsuit she filed against the pilot and the helicopter company, Island Express, the representative has said: "Any injuries or damages to plaintiffs and/or their decedent were directly caused in full or in part by the negligence or fault of plaintiffs and/or their decedent"
The statement further explains "including their knowing and voluntary encounter with the risks involved, and that this negligence was a substantial factor in causing their purported damages, for which this answering defendant bears no responsibility."
According to the statement, obtained by TMZ, the representatives response after Ms. Bryant filed a lawsuit alleging that Island Express Helicopters and Island Express Holding Corp was supposed to follow their usual flight rules.
Vanessa alleged that the conditions the day of the crash were not conducive to flying the helicopter.
In Los Angeles County Superior Court, Bryant also claimed the pilot failed “to use ordinary care in piloting the subject aircraft” and was “negligent”.
Additionally, it alleges that the pilot was disciplined in 2015 for violating the visual flight rule minimums by flying into an airspace of reduced visibility.
Ms Bryant has also filed a claim against the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, contending deputies shared unauthorized photos of the site where her husband and daughter died in a helicopter crash in January.
In the lawsuit, Vanessa Bryant claimed that Sheriff Alex Villanueva "personally assured her" that the family's privacy would be protected as it related to the crash site.
Vanessa Bryant's husband and daughter Gianna were part of a group traveling to a youth basketball tournament via helicopter.
The report reveals Bryant claimed "In reality, however, no fewer than eight sheriff's deputies were at the scene snapping cell-phone photos of the dead children, parents, and coaches,"
"As the department would later admit, there was no investigative purpose for deputies to take pictures at the crash site. Rather, the deputies took photos for their own personal purposes."