Kobe Bryant among 9 dead in So. Calif. helicopter crash

The retired NBA superstar was on chopper that slammed into a foggy LA area mountainside

SKY News
January 26, 2020 - 3:29 pm
NBA Legend Kobe Bryant September 15, 2019 in Beijing, China

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LOS ANGELES  (ABC News) -- Basketball legend Kobe Bryant is among five people who died in a helicopter crash in the wealthy Southern California residential neighborhood of Calabasas, ESPN has confirmed.

There were no survivors in the crash around 10 a.m. local time Sunday, fire officials said in a press conference. The Sikorsky S-76 helicopter crashed under unknown circumstances, a spokesperson from the National Transportation Safety Board told ABC News.

Witnesses who were mountain biking in the area saw the helicopter in the distress, Los Angeles County Fire Capt. Tony Imbrenda told reporters. It is not known whether the pilot alerted over radio that the aircraft was in distress, Imbrenda said.

It is unclear who the helicopter belonged to or where it originated from and was going to. Firefighters are working on containing the fire that resulted.

Bryant was 41 years old.

He was drafted to the NBA out of high school and spent his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, winning five NBA championships.

LeBron James surpassed Bryant's all-time scoring record on Saturday during the Lakers' game against the Philadelphia 76ers. Bryant tweeted at James congratulating him on beating his record.

 

This is a developing story.

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