Two Families Involved in Kobe Bryant Accident Sue Helicopter Operator for Wrongful Death

Members of the Altobelli and Mauser families were among those killed in the Jan. 26 crash

Two of the families involved in the January 26 helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant, his daughter and seven others have filed wrongful death lawsuits against the company that owned the crashed helicopter.

The first lawsuit was filed by the two children of John and Keri Altobelli, who died in the crash along with their daughter Alyssa. The second was filed by the husband and three children of Christina Mauser, who died in the crash as well. All parties are suing Island Express Helicopters for negligence.

These lawsuits come after Vanessa Bryant, Kobe’s widow, filed a similar suit for wrongful death in February, the same day as a memorial service took place in Los Angeles in honor of Kobe Bryant’s life. However, neither suit named the pilot involved in the crash as a defendant as Vanessa’s Bryant lawsuit did.

Both suits mention that Island Express Helicopters “negligently and carelessly breached its duty to own, lease, manage, maintain, control, entrust, charter and operate the Subject Helicopter in a reasonable manner.” The lawsuits are seeking unspecified damages.

The National Transportation Safety Board said in a preliminary report on Feb. 7 that the helicopter carrying the Bryants and the seven others did not suffer from engine failure at the time of the fatal crash. The NTSB report said the helicopter was destroyed by “impact forces and fire.”

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.

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