On Sunday, January 26, former Los Angeles Lakers star player and all-around basketball legend Kobe Bryant (41) tragically perished in a helicopter crash in California, along with his second-eldest daughter Gianna (“Gigi”) (13) and seven other individuals aboard the aircraft. Infamous tabloid TMZ broke the news on their website, a move that was quickly scolded by Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva who slammed the tabloid’s lack of respect in choosing to publish the sensitive information seemingly prior to law enforcement having contacted Bryant’s family. As Villaneuva put it, “It would be extremely disrespectful to understand that your loved one . . . perished and you learn about it from TMZ . . . [t]hat is just wholly inappropriate.”
This post was originally published on the Cardozo Arts & Entertainment Law Journal website on February 12, 2020. The original post can be accessed via the Archived Link button above.
Reich, Dylan, "Tabloids and Tragedy: TMZ’s hijacking of the death announcement of Kobe Bryant" (2020). AELJ Blog. 222.