The measure, which will take effect in January, will make it a crime for first responders to take unauthorized photos of deceased people at the scene of an accident or crime. It comes after Vanessa Bryant sued the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department over the unauthorized photos taken at Kobe's helicopter crash scene.
Shortly after the January 26 crash that killed the late basketball legend, his daughter Gianna and seven others, reports surfaced that graphic photos of the victims were being "passed around." Eight deputies were later accused of taking and/or sharing graphic photos of the scene. While Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said at the time that he'd had ordered the images to be deleted because the department has a policy against taking and sharing crime scene photos, he claimed that the policy did not apply to accident scenes, CBS News reports.
According to Vanessa's lawsuit, “no fewer than 8 sheriff’s deputies at the crash site, pulled out their personal cell phones and snapped photos of the dead children, parents, and coaches. The deputies took these photos for their own personal gratification.”
The new law makes it a misdemeanor with fines up to $1,000 per offense to take photos for anything other than an official law enforcement purpose at crash/crime scenes.
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