Days after their sudden passing, more details have been released about the deaths of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna in a helicopter crash.
On Tuesday, the Los Angeles Coroner’s Office identified four of the crash's nine victims —Kobe Bryant, John Altobelli, Sarah Chester and Ara Zobayan — from their fingerprints.
The other five victims — Gianna Bryant, Payton Chester, Alyssa Altobelli, Keri Altobelli and Christina Mauser — were identified through “round-the-clock testing and analysis of DNA.”
After body examinations were performed on Tuesday, the cause of death for all nine victims was deemed to be “blunt trauma.” The manner of death was ruled an “accident.”
At the time of the accident on Sunday, Kobe, Gianna, and the rest of the victims were en route to the Mamba Academy when the helicopter crashed in Calabasas. It is believed that all victims died instantly.
Earlier this week, NTSB spokeswoman Jennifer Homendy told reporters that the chopper was descending at a rate of 2,000 feet per minute, causing a “high-energy impact.”
She also noted that the Sikorsky S-76B helicopter did not have a “terrain awareness and warning system,” or TAWS, which alerts pilots when they are too close to the ground. As of right now, the FAA only requires the system in air ambulances.
The NTSB is looking at weather and other factors, and has obtained maintenance and airworthiness records. Interviews with air traffic controllers and the helicopter’s operators are underway.
The NTSB will likely issue a preliminary report with more details in the next 10 days. A still more detailed follow-up will be issued in 12 to 18 months.