Two of the families whose loved ones tragically passed away in the helicopter crash that also killed Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, have reportedly reached a settlement with Los Angeles County in connection to the alleged leaking and sharing of photos from the 2020 crash site.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved $2.5 million to be split equally between the family of Christine Mauser and the family of John, Keri, and Alyssa Altobelli. Per the settlement, $1.25 million dollars will go to Mauser’s widower, Matthew Mauser, and $1.25 million will go to J. J. and Alexis, the two surviving children of John and Keri Altobelli.
Mauser and the Altobelli siblings reportedly filed their own separate federal lawsuits against L.A. County claiming they suffered emotional distress after the news outlet revealed through an investigation that L.A. County’s sheriff’s deputies and firefighters took photos of the crash's aftermath.
Mauser and the Altobelli siblings also alleged that the authorities shared those photos for purposes that had nothing to do with their duties as law enforcement.
According to the outlet, the county’s legal counsel recommended that they settle with the Mauser and Altobelli families due to the uncertain risks and costs of potential litigation when the case inevitably went to trial.
“Given the risks and uncertainties of litigation, as well as the tragic accident giving rise to the lawsuits, fair and reasonable settlements at this time will avoid further litigation costs; therefore, full and final settlements of the two cases are warranted,” the county’s legal counsel said in a report.
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“We believe these proposed settlements of $1.25 million are reasonable and fair to all concerned,” Skip Miller, a lawyer representing the county, said last week. “We are pleased that the Mauser and Altobelli families, who as private citizens suffered the same grief and loss as others, will be able to move forward after these settlements. We also hope that eventually the other families will be able to do the same.”
The county had already reportedly spent $1.29 million in legal costs in connection to the two cases.
These settlements this afternoon come mere hours after RadarOnline.com reported how Vanessa Bryant had a big win after a judge rejected L.A. County’s request to have the widow of Kobe Bryant undergo a psychiatric evaluation. The county was reportedly concerned that Vanessa did not suffer from emotional distress due to the sharing of the pictures by county employees, but because of the fatal and tragic helicopter crash itself.
Although two families settled with the county today, Vanessa seems intent on bringing those responsible for allegedly sharing the photos of her husband and daughter to court.