Vanessa Bryant just talked about Kobe Bryant, Gianna, the crash and the photos that officials took of their bodies while on the stand — and she was overcome with emotion while trying to explain how awful it all has truly been for her.
Using a handkerchief to wipe away tears after nearly every sentence — Vanessa said she first learned of the crash after an assistant informed her of it at her home. She said L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva was the one who eventually told her there were no survivors.
Vanessa said on the stand that she begged him to secure the area, as she was concerned about paparazzi. She testified he didn’t tell her at the time that his deputies had photographed her family members’ bodies.
She later said she learned of the graphic photos through the Los Angeles Times report — and, while speaking through sobs, she said it gutted her.
“I felt like I wanted to run down the block and scream,” she said in the courtroom. “I can’t escape my body. I can’t escape what I feel.”
She added that she was “blindsided, devastated, hurt and betrayed” to know that authorities had snapped pics at the scene.
“I trusted them,” she said. “I trusted them to not do these things.”
Vanessa told the courtroom one of the most disturbing things to her was that because of where Gianna was located at the crash scene, she believed officials had to have moved the 13-year-old’s body in order to photograph it.
“They took advantage that Daddy couldn’t protect her,” she said. “He was at the morgue.”
Vanessa testified that if the photos ever got out, and if she were to somehow see them, it’d rip her apart.
“I don’t ever want to see my babies in that way,” she said, explaining to the courtroom that she lives in constant fear that the photos could surface. “Nobody should ever have to see their family in that way.”
As we reported, Vanessa arrived at the courtroom earlier Friday morning in a black dress, black coat and dark sunglasses. She wore a “Mama” necklace — and appeared to be confident, flashing a smile on her way into the L.A. building.
The 40-year-old is suing L.A. County officials after learning deputies had taken and shared graphic photos from the wreckage scene.
Vanessa claimed in her suit the officials, and their actions, caused her severe emotional distress. She’s suing for unspecified damages, including punitive damages … and during her testimony on Friday, she said she’s willing to “go through hell and back” to get justice for Kobe and Gianna.