VANESSA Bryant said that she feels "ill" at the thought of photos of her husband and daughter's bodies at the helicopter crash site where they died being leaked to the press.

The late basketball legend's wife has sued the Los Angeles County sheriff and his department, claiming they caused severe emotional distress because several cops at the crash scene took photos on personal cell phones.


The lawsuit alleges that "no fewer than eight sheriff's deputies at the crash site pulled out their personal cell phones and snapped photos of the dead children, parents and coaches," according to TMZ.

The lawsuit reportedly goes on to say that the deputies took the photos for "their own personal gratification."

The pictures were exposed when a deputy was at a bar and showed them to a woman he was reportedly trying to impress. A bartender reportedly overheard the conversation and contacted the sheriff's department.


The suit also alleges that LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva tried to cover up the mishap by telling deputies that if they deleted photos they had from the crash site from their phones, they would not face discipline.

When word of the photos reached Bryant, they caused incredible emotional distress, according to the suit.

"Ms. Bryant feels ill at the thought of strangers gawking at images of her deceased husband and child, and she lives in fear that she or her children will one day confront horrific images of their loved ones online," it said.

Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter tragically died in a helicopter crash on January 26.

They were on their way to the Mamba Academy for basketball practice when the private helicopter went down in the Calabasas mountains northwest of Los Angeles.

The Bryant family has had to deal with additional public drama this week, as the late NBA's stars wife was pulled into a back-and-forth with her own mother.

Her mom, Sofia Laine, gave an emotional interview to El Gordo y La Flaca where she claimed her daughter kicked her out of her home and took back her car following the deaths of Kobe and Gigi.

"She told me, 'I need you to get out of this house,'" Laine said. "She also told me that she wanted her car and she wants it now."

However, Bryant has denied the allegations, and released a statement to the Spanish-language station claiming that her mother has not been cut off from the family.

"My husband and daughter passed away unexpectedly, and yet my mother had the audacity to do a television interview speaking negatively of me while shedding tears for a car and a house that were not in her name," she said.

"She has removed all her diamond jewelry, emptied the apartment I provided, and put away the furniture to make it look like she doesn't have my support.

"My husband and I have supported her financially for the past 20 years, and continue to do so, in addition to her monthly alimony," she added.

Bryant also alleged that her mother had not been there for her or her three daughters – Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3 and Capri, 1 – since Kobe and Gigi passed away.

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