Vanessa Bryant Ordered to Submit 4 Years of Therapy Records in Lawsuit Over Leaked Kobe Crash Photos
A judge has ordered Vanessa Bryant to turn over her mental health records in the latest development of her lawsuit against Los Angeles County.
A motion by the county was granted on Monday, requiring Bryant and her therapist to submit documents spanning from Jan. 1, 2017, to the present, according to a filing obtained by PEOPLE.
Monday's motion comes after the judge denied the county's previous request to require Bryant to undergo psychiatric evaluation to prove leaked photos of the January 2020 helicopter crash that killed her husband Kobe Bryant and their 13-year-old daughter Gianna caused her emotional distress.
The crash also claimed the lives of 13-year-old Payton Chester, Sarah Chester, 46, 14-year-old Alyssa Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, 46, John Altobelli, 56, Christina Mauser, 38, and pilot Ara Zobayan, 50.
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Bryant, 39, is seeking damages for emotional distress and mental anguish following the news that eight L.A. County Sheriff's Department deputies allegedly took graphic photographs of the victims and shared them with unauthorized people. Sheriff Alex Villanueva confirmed to reporters at the time that only the county coroner's office and investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board were permitted to photograph the crash scene.
In her recent deposition, the mother of four testified that she is "traumatized, has trouble sleeping and is depressed for 'many' reasons."
"The impact of the helicopter crash was so damaging, I just don't understand how someone can have no regard for life and compassion, and, instead, choose to take that opportunity to photograph lifeless and helpless individuals for their own sick amusement," she also said in her deposition.
The county is disputing Bryant's claim that "the photograph-related actions or inactions proximately caused the allegedly severe and continuing emotional distress for which [Bryant] seeks monetary compensation."
Bryant and her therapist must turn over the records by Nov. 29. The trial is scheduled for Feb. 22, 2022.
An attorney for Bryant did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.
Last year, Bryant filed a legal complaint against the county, its sheriff's office and fire department claiming that deputies "publicly disseminated photos from the helicopter crash site" after she personally requested "that the area be designated a no-fly zone and protected from photographers."
Her previous court filing detailed that despite her request, "photos of the remains quickly spread within the Sheriff's Department as deputies transmitted them to one another via text message and AirDrop. Within forty-eight hours, at least 10 members of the Sheriff's Department obtained photos of the victims' remains on their personal cell phones despite having no legitimate governmental use of the photos."
In May 2020, a spokesperson for the Bryant family exclusively told PEOPLE that the "[filing] solely is about enforcing accountability, protecting the victims and making sure no one ever has to deal with this conduct in the future," adding, "When a family suffers the loss of loved ones, they have the right to expect that they will be treated with dignity and respect. The Deputies in this case betrayed that sacred trust. This claim is intended to hold the Sheriff's Department accountable and to prevent future misconduct."