LA cop testifies about gruesome Kobe Bryant copter crash site

A Los Angeles police officer released gruesome new details about the crash site of Kobe Bryant’s helicopter during testimony Thursday – including that “pieces of meat were hanging from trees.”

Deputy David Katz of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department recalled the harrowing accident he responded to in January 2020 on the second day of testimony in Bryant’s widow Vanessa’s federal lawsuit against the county.

“At one point I was standing over two bodies,” Katz told the jury, adding that a larger body belonged to the late NBA legend.

“[There were] Body parts, spread limbs, pieces of flesh hanging from trees, bushes… mixed with various helicopter parts. And blood in various places,” he testified.

Katz said he received a radio message from a supervisor ordering him not to take photos of the accident while driving up a hill in response to the scene in Calabasas.

Arriving a few minutes after his call, Katz said Deputy Douglas Johnson told him he had searched the massive site – and “already taken over 100 photos” of the remains.

Opening speech Kobe Bryant Crash Photo Trial
Deputy David Katz of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department said there were “chunks of meat” hanging from trees at the crash site.
Mona Shafer Edwards / BACKGROUND

Katz testified that he relayed the message not to take photos to Johnson, but the other police officer replied that he was directed by someone at a nearby command post to take the pictures.

Katz was speaking out during Vanessa Bryant’s federal invasion of privacy lawsuit against Los Angeles County alleging that lawmakers and firefighters shared photos of the disfigured bodies of the former Laker and the couple’s 13-year-old daughter at the crash site.

When asked about the sheriff’s department’s policy regarding photographing incidents, Katz said he doesn’t recall receiving any training on what to do if a picture was shared with him.

Opening speech Kobe Bryant Crash Photo Trial.
Katz testified that he was told not to take photos of the crash after another officer had already taken “hundreds.”
Mona Shafer Edwards / BACKGROUND
The scene of a helicopter crash that claimed the lives of former NBA great Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant, 13, is shown January 26, 2020 in Calabasas, California.
Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant died in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020.
TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC images

On Thursday, LA Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka, who was also Bryan’s close friend and agent, testified that he would like all photos of his pal’s fall to be wiped out.

“I would want them destroyed and removed from the universe,” Pelinka said of the images, which are said to have been shared by first responders.

Pelinka broke down in tears on the stand Wednesday as he described the day he lost Bryant and his goddaughter Gianna Bryant.

The site of a helicopter crash.
LA Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka testified that he would like all photos of the crash destroyed.
TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC images

Vanessa Bryant continues to struggle with grief and anxiety over the possibility that images taken at the scene could potentially be released and viewed by her three surviving daughters, he said on the first day of his testimony.

“She was desperate, horrified, angry,” Pelinka said of Vanessa, whom he often referred to as his sister. “The very people protecting us did that. How could that be?”

https://nypost.com/2022/08/11/la-cop-testifies-about-gruesome-kobe-bryant-copter-crash-site/ LA cop testifies about gruesome Kobe Bryant copter crash site

JACLYN DIAZ

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