The man who lost his wife and children in Kobe Bryant's helicopter crash said Thursday in court that he feared brutal images of his loved ones would be leaked to the Internet. He said he lived in fear.
Christopher Chester, who sued Los Angeles County first responders for sharing disturbing photos of the scene, said he said he wanted "justice and accountability". He is suing LA County with Kobe's widow Vanessa Bryant.
Chester lost his wife Sarah and his 13-year-old daughter Peyton in his 2020 accident . The accident also involved Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and five others.
"I am terrified every day," Christopher Chester said of photos that may have been circulating online. "There are so many things that people thought didn't exist that turned up on the internet." They even advised me not to surf the web in case I came across a bad photo.
"We couldn't have constructed a scenario where that would happen," Chester said. "I had largely isolated my family from the details [of injuries sustained by loved ones]. Now I thought there would be pictures [on the Internet] of the remains.
Chester recalled on the stand the last moments he spent with his wife and daughter before heading to the doomed helicopter:
"Peyton and I had a very close relationship. "I gave her a Lara speech, kissed Sarah and said I would see them tonight," he said in heartbreaking testimony. I called Kobe Bryant's assistant and was told that "somewhere between Orange County and Calabasas we lost contact."
Chester said in court that he believed he had no clear explanation for the decimation of the photos, so he decided to sue.
It is unknown how many photos were taken, where they were sent, or where they were stored. The identity of the person who received the photo from the sheriff's deputy who took the photo of the human remains is also unknown.
"Let's hope he doesn't exist." Chester testified. "But that uncertainty? Vanessa and I have to live with that fear."
I believed it would be processed.
"It never crossed my mind that [first responders] would take pictures there," he said.
The widow of the NBA legend is set to testify on Friday, as will LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.