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Kobe Bryant’s Family Accepts Nearly $29 Million From Lawsuit Over Crash Photos as Vanessa Bryant Finishes Settling Case

Kobe Bryant's Family Accepts Nearly $29 Million From Lawsuit as Vanessa Bryant Finishes Settling Case white suit
Vanessa Bryant leaving the federal courthouse with her family. Jae C Hong/AP/Shutterstock

Vanessa Bryant has settled a lawsuit regarding photos that were taken of husband Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna’s remains at the site of their 2020 helicopter crash.

Related: Kobe Bryant and Vanessa Bryant's Relationship Timeline

The model, 40, agreed to accept a $28.85 million settlement from Los Angeles County on Tuesday, February 28, ABC News reports. The settlement concludes her battle against the first responders she accused of unnecessarily sharing gruesome photos of the victims at the crash site.

Kobe died in January 2020 at the age of 41 alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna — and seven other passengers — when the helicopter they were traveling on crashed into a hillside in Calabasas, California.

Vanessa and Chris Chester (who lost his wife Sarah and their 13-year-old daughter Payton in the crash) later filed a civil suit against Los Angeles County for emotional distress and mental anguish. After a two-week jury trial in August 2022, the California native and Chester were each given a $15 million judgement. The $28.85 million settlement includes Vanessa’s initial award as well as funds to settle potential claims from her and Kobe’s surviving daughters — Natalia, 20, Bianka, 6, and Capri, 3.

Related: Kobe Bryant's Life in Photos

“Today marks the successful culmination of Mrs. Bryant’s courageous battle to hold accountable those who engaged in this grotesque conduct,” Vanessa’s attorney, Luis Li, said in a statement on Tuesday via ABC News. “She fought for her husband, her daughter, and all those in the community whose deceased family were treated with similar disrespect. We hope her victory at trial and this settlement will put an end to this practice.”

Li previously stated that Vanessa would donate the proceeds from the lawsuit to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation, which was founded in memory of Kobe and Gianna.

Kobe Bryant's Family Accepts Nearly $29 Million From Lawsuit as Vanessa Bryant Finishes Settling Case 2018
Vanessa Bryant, Kobe Bryant, Natalia Bryant, and Gianna Bryant. at the World Premiere of “A Wrinkle in Time”, February 2018. Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

Though the court still has to approve the settlement, Los Angeles County’s legal team believes this is a fair agreement as well.

“We believe the settlement approved by the Board in the Bryant case is fair and reasonable. The $28,850,000 settlement includes the verdict awarded by the federal jury in August 2022, and further resolves all outstanding issues related to pending legal claims in state court, future claims by the Bryant children, and other costs, with each party responsible for its respective attorneys’ fees,” Mira Hashmall, lead trial counsel for LA County in the Bryant-Chester case, said in a statement.

The settlement comes six months after Vanessa’s heartbreaking testimony.

Related: Vanessa Bryant's Lawsuit Over Kobe's Crash Site Photos: Everything to Know

“I live in fear,” the philanthropist testified at the trial. “I live in fear every day of seeing — of being on social media and having these photographs pop up or having my 19-year-old be on social media and having these images pop up.”

She further explained, “I want to remember my husband and my daughter the way that they were … I don’t ever want to see these photographs. I have three little girls!”

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