LA judge rules Vanessa Bryant will not have to submit to psych exam
LOS ANGELES - Los Angeles county's attempt to convince a judge that Kobe Bryant's widow should submit to a psychiatric evaluation has failed, meaning Vanessa Bryant can move forward with her lawsuit against the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.
According to The Week, LA County's request for the compulsory medical evaluation was a direct result of Bryant's decision to sue the County for the actions of certain representatives amid the aftermath of the deadly helicopter crash that took the lives of Bryant's husband, daughter, and seven other individuals.
Bryant maintains that after the January 26, 2020 crash, some firefighters and sheriff's deputies shared "gratuitous photos" of the deceased passengers with a bartender and possibly with others.
The Associated Press quotes Bryant as saying, "for the rest of my life I'm going to have to fear that these photographs of my husband and child will be leaked."
According to her lawsuit, she is seeking damages for "negligence, invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress."
LA County responded to the lawsuit by implying that as the photographs in question were never released to the public and had never even been viewed by Bryant, it was unlikely she was suffering from any sort of emotional distress directly tied to the photos.
The County said a professional medical exam should be carried out to prove whether the photos did or did not cause her distress.
In addition to mandating the exam to Bryant, the County also wanted the living family members of others who were killed in the crash to also submit to psychiatric evaluations.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Charles F. Eick on Monday said the county's motion to compel an evaluation was untimely, ultimately denying its request.
Bryant's case is expected to go to trial in February of 2022.
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