The Disturbing Threat Vanessa Bryant Received About Kobe's Body

Vanessa Bryant's case against Los Angeles County has taken some disturbing turns since it hit the courtroom. Vanessa's lawyer opened the trial — which came about after some first responders were accused of taking graphic photos of the helicopter crash scene that killed her husband, Kobe Bryant, and daughter, Gianna "Gigi" Bryant, and showing them to people not affiliated with the case — by sharing how she lives in constant fear of the images leaking. And things have only gotten more difficult from there.

Nicki Swift has been in the courtroom throughout the trial, as Vanessa admitted she was left "blindsided" when she learned via a 2020 Los Angeles Times report about the disturbing photos, adding, "I trusted them not to do these things." As for her reaction to learning about the images? "I wanted to run down the block and just scream," she admitted.

Vanessa's co-plaintiff in the case, Chris Chester, has also spoken of his experience on the stand, explaining how, just like Vanessa, he too lives in constant fear of the extremely graphic images, believed to have shown gruesome sights like mangled body parts, being seen by the public. Chris, who lost his wife, Sarah Chester, and his teenage daughter, Payton Chester, in the crash, pointed to how one accused fire captain turned in his laptop with a missing hard drive, poking holes in the investigation into what photos may still remain. Now, Vanessa has taken to the stand, sharing an extremely disturbing threat she received.

Vanessa Bryant's 'disturbing' message about the Kobe crash photos

While Los Angeles County's defense is claiming that Vanessa Bryant's trauma stems from the death of Kobe Bryant, Gianna "Gigi" Bryant, and the seven other people who lost their lives that day, not the images, Vanessa explained on the stand that much of her terror stems from the never-ending worry that the disturbing photos could leak. Nicki Swift was in the courtroom during Vanessa's August 19 testimony, where she revealed receiving a horrific Instagram direct message while on vacation with her beloved daughters. It read, "Ima leak Koby's body," complete with unsettling fire and helicopter emojis. She explained that she experiences panic attacks over her fear of the photos coming out and is particularly terrified her youngest daughter, Capri, who doesn't remember her sister and dad the way they were, will remember them from the horrific photos should they get out.

Vanessa shared she's still leaning on Kobe when it comes to dealing with her ongoing nightmare, particularly in front of her children. She told the court that she uses the way he would always encourage her to put on a brave face when they were meeting with children involved with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, as he would tell her "we have to smile" and "make this the best moment," a mantra she's using for her ordeal today.

Vanessa's testimony came after a very difficult few days in court, as previously reported, she left the courtroom in tears as particularly harrowing details of what happened with the photos were revealed.