New California law bans sharing crime scene photos after images leaked of Kobe Bryant’s chopper crash

By Sarah Moon, Scottie Andrew and Stella Chan, CNN

A California bill inspired by leaked photos of the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant passed this weak, banning law enforcement from sharing graphic crime scene photos off the job.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an invasion of privacy bill on Monday which would make it illegal for first responders to share photos of a deceased person at a crime scene “for any purpose other than an official law enforcement purpose.”

Crews behind a screened fence remove Kobe Bryant’s memorial at L.A. Live on February 3, 2020 as a few scattered items are left around Staples Center. A new law in California bans the sharing of crime scene photos after images of Kobe Bryant’s helicopter crash were leaked.(Sarah Reingewirtz/MediaNews Group) 

AB 2655 was first introduced by Assemblymember Mike Gipson after Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies allegedly shared graphic photos of the wreckage of the helicopter crash that killed NBA legend Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven others earlier this year. In a tweet celebrating the bill’s passage, Gipson called it the “Kobe Bryant Act of 2020.”

Earlier this month, Bryant’s widow Vanessa sued the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and Sheriff Alex Villanueva over the sharing of the images.

The day of the crash, family members gathered at the Lost Hills Sheriff’s Station where the sheriff assured them the crash site was secured. However, a leak from the department, according to the lawsuit obtained by CNN, led to TMZ breaking the news and fans flocked to the site.

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