Pilot Ara Zobayan was actually descending, but reported that he was climbing when the crash occurred, the NTSB reports said. Zobayan, who died in the crash, said he was climbing to 4,000 feet to get above clouds, but instead crashed into a hillside, the reports, released Wednesday, said.
A final report on the cause of the crash will be issued later. However, today’s reports noted that Zobayan “misperceived” the pitch of his craft, a common pilot error.
Earlier this month, Bryant’s widow, Vanessa, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the helicopter company and the successor in interest of the pilot. Her 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, was also killed in the crash.
The lawsuit did not specify the amount of damages, but did note Bryant’s lost earnings total in the “hundreds of millions.”