Kobe Bryant‘s widow Vanessa has slammed Evan Rachel Wood as ‘vile and disturbing’ more than a year after the actress called him a ‘rapist’ just hours after he died.
The NBA legend and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant, died in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020 sparking memorials and murals across the country.
Wood, 33, had tweeted: ‘What has happened is tragic. I am heartbroken for Kobe’s family. He was a sports hero. He was also a rapist. And all of these truths can exist simultaneously.’
Vanessa Bryant, 38, took to her Instagram Stories to respond to the Westworld actress, noting that the tweet had just come to her attention.
Westworld actress Evan Rachel Wood, 33, had slammed Kobe Bryant as a ‘rapist’ on the day he died
Bryant’s widow Vanessa, left, respond to Wood’s tweet more than a year later claiming it had just come to her attention
Vanessa Bryant called Wood’s tweet ‘false’ and ‘defamatory,’ adding the actress did not ‘know the facts of the case’
Bryant also thanks actress Kyla Pratt for condemning actress Evan Rachel Wood after she called Kobe a ‘rapist’ in a since deleted tweet
Evan Rachel Wood had tweeted that Kobe ‘was a sports hero’ and a ‘rapist’ just hours after he died
‘Your false, insensitive, defamatory and slanderous tweet on 1/26/20 is vile and disturbing to say the least,’ Bryant posted.
‘Behavior like this is part of the reason why innocent black men go to jail for crimes they didn’t commit. An accusation doesn’t make someone guilty.’
She added: ‘YOU DON’T KNOW THE FACTS OF THE CASE.’
Vanessa sent the same message to film producer Abigail Disney, the granddaughter of Roy O. Disney, who co-founded The Walt Disney Company with her great-uncle Walt Disney.
‘The man was a rapist. Deal with it,’ Disney tweeted at the time.
Fans immediately came to Kobe’s defense in 2020 after Wood’s tweet, including Dr. Dolittle actress Kayla Pratt.
‘Evan. We met as kids & I grew up in the same industry as you and have admired your work from afar these past few years. On camera and off. But this tweet? How f**king dare you?’ Pratt tweeted.
Bryant also posted to her Instagram stories on Saturday to rip the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, which she filed a lawsuit against in September for taking and leaking a photo of the helicopter crash that killed her husband.
‘The Sheriff’s Department wants to redact the names of the deputies that took and/or shared photos of my husband, daughter and other victims. They want their names to be exempt from the public,’ Bryant posted.
‘Anyone else facing allegations would be unprotected, named and released to the public.’
She continued: ‘Not all law enforcement is bad. These specific deputies need to be held accountable for their actions just like everyone else. #doublestandard.’
Shortly after receiving backlash last year for her Kobe tweet, Wood said her post was ‘not a condemnation or a celebration’ of the athlete and his death, E! Online reported.
She wrote that her tweet was ‘a reminder that everyone will have different feelings and there is room for us all to grieve together instead of fighting. Everyone has lost. Everyone will be triggered, so please show kindness and respect to all.’
Wood later deleted both tweets after more online criticism, the outlet reported.
Kobe, left, is pictured with Vanessa Bryant who sued the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in September after deputies leaked photos of the helicopter crash that killed him
Kobe Bryant, right, is pictured with his daughter Gianna Bryant, who also died in the crash
The actress has not yet publicly commented on Bryant’s post, but she has since posted to her own Instagram Stories with a screenshot of a tweet from marketing executive Steven Bartlett criticizing the social media platform.
‘Instagram has ruined a whole generations expectations of relationships, work, and everything in between. It has made “perfect” look normal. So now “good” has become disposable,’ reads Bartlett’s tweet, posted by Wood.
A 19-year-old employee of a hotel in Colorado accused Kobe of sexual assault in 2003 but the charges were dropped when she declined to testify.
The woman, who worked at the Lodge and Spa at Cordillera, accused Kobe of raping her and causing bruising to her neck. Bryant denied raping her and insisted sex with the woman was consensual.
Musician Marilyn Manson, right, is pictured with his wife Lindsay Usich at the 2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party
Wood, a rape survivor, has accused Manson, pictured, of grooming and abusing her for years
Prosecutors dropped the charges after she declined to testify. She later filed a civil case against the Los Angeles Lakers, which settled with her out of court in 2005.
Wood, a rape survivor, has no known personal connection to Kobe but came forward earlier this month with allegations she was groomed and abused for years by her ex-boyfriend Marilyn Manson.
Manson has denied the sexual abuse allegations against him as ‘horrible distortions of reality’ after he was dropped by his record label and as another three women made claims against him, bringing the total number of accusers to eight.