Investigators have recovered all 9 bodies from the Calabasas site where Kobe Bryant's helicopter crashed
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
- Investigators in California have recovered all nine bodies of those who died aboard the Sikorsky S-76 helicopter, which crashed into the Calabasas hills killing NBA star Kobe Bryant.
- No one survived the Sunday crash in Calabasas, California, roughly 30 miles northwest of Los Angeles.
- The Los Angeles coroner's office announced on Tuesday that four victims, including Bryant, have been identified: John Altobelli, 56, Sarah Chester, 45, and pilot Ara Zobayan, 50.
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Investigators in California have recovered all nine bodies of those who died aboard the Sikorsky S-76 helicopter, which crashed into the Calabasas hills killing NBA star Kobe Bryant.
No one survived the Sunday crash in Calabasas, California, roughly 30 miles northwest of Los Angeles. The cause of the crash is still under investigation.
The Los Angeles coroner's office announced on Tuesday that all nine bodies had been recovered from the crash site. Three of the bodies were recovered on Sunday afternoon and six others were removed on Monday.
All of the bodies were taken to the department's Forensic Science Center in order to positively identify the victims.
On Tuesday, four of the crash victims were identified, the department announced, including Kobe Bryant.
The other identified victims included: college baseball coach John Altobelli, 56, father of Gianna Bryant's basketball teammate Alyssa Altobelli, Sarah Chester, 45, and pilot Ara Zobayan, 50.
On Tuesday, officials from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) held a briefing and gave updated information about its investigation.
NTSB board member Jennifer Homendy said the descent rate of the aircraft was 2,000 feet per minute, which she referred to as a "high energy impact crash." The helicopter was 20 to 30 feet from clearing a hill before the crash.
She added that the helicopter didn't have a terrain awareness warning system, which provides terrain information to the pilot. Videos from the day of the crash indicate that foggy conditions may have contributed to poor visibility.
On Monday, Homendy said the aircraft did not have a black box on board, which was not a requirement for the aircraft.
Homendy said the helicopter circled for 12 minutes while awaiting clearance from air-traffic controllers. Then the helicopter climbed to about 2,300 feet to avoid a cloud layer and shortly after started a descending left turn.
The last radar contact with the helicopter was at about 9:45 a.m.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said the department was protecting the area surrounding the crash to prevent trespassing.
Bryant was a fixture on the Los Angeles Lakers for his entire 20-year career. He was the fourth all-time scorer in the NBA - having been passed by LeBron James on Saturday - and won five NBA championships.