*The two police officers will not face charges for the alleged leaking of the 2009 photo of Rihanna in the aftermath of her Grammy-night beating by Chris Brown.
Days after the photo was taken at the police station, it famously appeared on TMZ. After a three-year investigation into the leak of the photo, which showed Rihanna severely bruised, the Los Angeles County district attorney announced that the two officers won’t face charges due to lack of evidence linking the officers to TMZ.
While they have been cleared of these charges, officers Blanca Lopez and Rebecca Reyes will still have to face a disciplinary committee in August, meaning they could still get fired from their posts at the LAPD.
According to the investigation, Reyes took the photo with her cell phone off a stack of photos of Rihanna’s injuries. She then sent it to her personal e-mail address from her LAPD one. Reyes and Lopez were roommates at the time and made multiple phone calls to TMZ and Fox Television in February 2009. Despite phone records to the media outlets, there was not sufficient evidence that money was exchanged in the lead-up to the photo leak.
The prosecutor said they “must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Reyes and Lopez disclosed the image of Robyn F. (Rihanna) to TMZ and obtained money in exchange for this disclosure. … As such, although both Reyes and Lopez’s actions are suspicious, they are insufficient to support a criminal prosecution.”
Meanwhile, Ri’s attorney, Donald Etra, added, “Apparently this was an internal decision by the district attorney. A victim’s privacy should be protected.” Etra didn’t say whether Rihanna would pursue any legal action on her own.
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