Tom Berner – No sooner was the world learning of the tragic death of sporting legend Kobe Bryant when the LA Times ask the question no-one was requesting to be answered: ‘What happened to Kobe Bryant’s sex assault case?
Bryant’s death in a helicopter crash created headlines everywhere. What happened in mid 2003 did something similar when the Lakers star was charged over an alleged rape of a desk clerk working in the Rocky Mountains town of Edwards, Colo.
The trial moved slowly with a not guilty plea and a weakened resolve from the accuser who added the libel attorney Lin Wood to her team. Wood advised that a trial may not end well for her and after a mock trial prior to jury selection did not go well for her.
In addition, there was the repeated publication of her name and the emailing to media outlets of a closed hearing relating to DNA evidence.
The case took 14 months before it was resolved with the accuser deciding not to proceed and the prosecution of Bryant was stopped.A civil suit brought by the accuser in August 2004 was settled out of court on March 2, 2005.
Kobe Bryant had retained one of Colorado’s leading criminal and white collar attorneys in Hal Haddon of Haddon Morgan Forman.
As LawFuel reported in 2006 “It was as though they (the charges) had never been lodged – everything swept away but the messy recriminations and the second-guessing that are likely to haunt the district attorney’s offices in Eagle County, Colo., for years to come.”
But the Kobe Bryant headlines today are immeasurably more sad.
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