One of the most controversial questions, which has been the subject of numerous court cases in recent days, is whether the county can perform so-called independent medical examinations, which involve psychiatric evaluations, of each of the complainants.
Bryant’s lawyers argue the exams are “cruel” and the county is sending a message asking for them. “When officials violate the privacy and constitutional rights of the citizens they have sworn to protect and serve, victims must rise to the challenge to seek justice,” said Bryant’s lawyers in one of the cases.
But the county maintains that the exams are “a routine part of the discovery process,” according to the documents. Bryant and the other plaintiffs claim they suffered emotional distress as a result of the actions of county employees, and the county believes that a medical professional should be allowed to examine the extent of that suffering.
At times, Louis Miller, an attorney representing Los Angeles County, has expressed remorse for asking the invasive questions of Bryant. “It’s not harassment,” Miller said at one point. “It’s just a trial. And I’m sorry I put you through this, but like I said at the start, I have to do my job.
“I shouldn’t have to go through this,” replied Bryant. “It’s not just a trial. “
Bryant said that after learning she couldn’t make it to the crash site, she met Rob Pelinka, the Lakers general manager who was Kobe’s agent for part of her career in the NBA. Pelinka, Bryant said, led them on the hour and forty-five minute trip to the sheriff’s station in Malibu, near the crash site.
At the sheriff’s station, Bryant said “no one would answer” questions about her husband and daughter. She was escorted from room to room, and after a long wait, she said, a pastor walked in, and then Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva came along with a publicist. Bryant said she wanted privacy and asked the publicist to leave the room.
Villanueva confirmed the deaths, Bryant said, and asked if there was anything he could do for her.
“And I said, ‘If you can’t bring my husband and baby back, make sure no one takes a picture of them. Please secure the area, ”Bryant said during the testimony. “And he said, ‘I will.’ And I said, ‘No, I need you to get on the phone right away and I need you to make sure I secure the area.’ “