Report: Los Angeles deputies shared Kobe Bryant crash photos

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Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

FILE - In this July 26, 2018, file photo former Los Angeles Laker Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna watch during the U.S. national championships swimming meet in Irvine, Calif. Federal investigators say wreckage from the helicopter that crashed last month and killed Bryant, his daughter and seven others did not show any outward evidence of engine failure, the National Transportation Safety Board said Friday, Feb. 7, 2020. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson,File)

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Authorities are investigating whether deputies shared graphic photos of the helicopter crash scene where Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter and seven others were killed.

The Los Angeles Times reported on Thursday that a public safety source with knowledge of the events had seen one of the photos on the phone of another official in a setting that was not related to the investigation of the crash. He said the photos showed the scene and victims' remains.

The source spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the allegations.

The Los Angeles Sheriff's Department said in a statement Friday it was investigating the allegations detailed in the newspaper's report.

“The sheriff is deeply disturbed at the thought deputies could allegedly engage in such an insensitive act,” the statement said. “A thorough investigation will be conducted by the department, with the number one priority of protecting the dignity and privacy of the victims and their families.”

Deputy Maria Lucero told The Associated Press on Friday that “the matter is being looked into.”

The Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs, the union that represents rank-and-file deputies, declined to comment specifically on the allegations.

“As with all investigations, we will aggressively represent our members and preserve their rights,” the union said in a statement Friday.