Vanessa Bryant on Saturday ripped actress Evan Rachel Wood for calling her late husband Kobe Bryant a “rapist” soon after he died in a helicopter crash last year.
“Your false, insensitive, defamatory and slanderous tweet on 1/26/20 is vile and disturbing to say the least,” Vanessa Bryant said in a post on her Instagram Story. “Behavior like this is part of the reason why innocent black men go to jail for crimes they didn’t commit. An accusation doesn’t make someone guilty.”
She said Wood’s tweet “just came to my attention” and added: “YOU DON’T KNOW THE FACTS OF THE CASE.”
Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and seven other people died when a helicopter they were taking to a basketball tournament crashed near Calabasas, California on January 26, 2020. Three days later, Wood tweeted: “I haven’t said anything about Kobe so far because I felt some time needed to pass before weighing in. But yes, it’s time for the sledgehammer to come out. The man was a rapist. Deal with it.”
In July 2003, Kobe Bryant was accused of raping a hotel employee in Colorado. Bryant was charged with sexual assault and spent much of the 2003-2004 NBA season traveling back and forth between Los Angeles and Eagle, Colorado for court hearings. The charges against Bryant were later dropped when his accuser decided to not testify; Bryant later settled a civil case outside of court in 2005.
Earlier this month, Wood accused former fiance Marilyn Manson of “grooming” her when she was a teenager and “horrifically” abusing her for years. Mason denied Wood’s claims, saying they were “horrible distortions of reality.”