LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – School officials are urging increased sensitivity on campus at an East Los Angeles high school after a video surfaced of a teacher calling Kobe Bryant a “horrible person” and a rapist just one day after the Laker legend’s death.

The incident was recorded Monday at James A. Garfield High School, where a 14-year-old student says band teacher Brian Bailey made the comments during a four-minute rant in which he’s heard making disparaging comments about Bryant, who died Sunday in a helicopter crash.

While the audio captured in the video is difficult to hear, Bailey appears to touch upon several points, including how he believed Bryant was bad for the Lakers as a team and how he was to blame for the helicopter crash.


“What made him a great basketball player also made him a horrible basketball player and a horrible person,” Bailey is heard saying on the video, later adding that he believed Bryant was ultimately responsible for getting the Lakers to trade Shaquille O’Neal to the Miami Heat in 2004.

Bailey also referenced Bryant’s 2005 sexual assault trial, in which Bryant’s accuser later dropped the charges.

“That guy raped a girl and got away with it, he raped her, his money and his power got away with raping a young lady,” the teacher continued. “If it was any of you, you’d be in jail.”

He also appeared to question Bryant’s decision to fly in a private helicopter that fateful morning when it smashed into a Calabasas hillside at nearly 200 mph.

“Is there any reason in God’s green earth you need to take a helicopter from Orange County to Calabasas?” he asked. “It’s a 40-mile drive, and from the time it takes you to drive to the airport and drive to another airport and get in a car, that’s 40 minutes also. Anyone knows that flying in a helicopter is the most dangerous things in the world, and by being selfish and by not being able to wait, he killed his family, straight up.”

“I know it’s not a popular opinion and you have every right to be upset with me,” he added.

In a message sent to parents Tuesday morning, Garfield principal Andres Favela said officials were aware of the statements: “We recently learned that negative comments about Kobe Bryant were made in a classroom…We also ask that everyone please be sensitive to others when discussing tragic events both inside and outside of the classroom.”

Counseling staff at the school have been alerted and were being prepared to deal with the issue, a spokesperson told CBSLA.

Comments (75)
  1. Sam Clone says:

    Man, people can be soooo horrible.

    1. You mean like a megalomaniac rapist Choking a 19 year old girl as he inserts himself into her still developing body?

      1. Shaniqua Jackson says:

        You one dumb fool.

      2. Trevor Sedis says:

        We’re not talking about YOU, just Kobe.

      3. swimologist says:

        Exactly. You are not ALLOWED to have any other opinion other than the official groveling one that is absolutely worshipful to a black celebrity. Having unapproved WrongThink opinions will see you lose your livelihood. Orwell’s 1984 was a warning, not how-to instruction manual.

      4. Lily Hill says:

        No, he meant you

  2. Sam Clone says:

    To be clear, being accused of rape is not the same as being found guilty of rape. I can accuse many of rape, doesn’t mean they committed rape. Also, look at the evidence, who gets raped and brags that they had consensual sex with their rapist.

    1. That is not a true statement regarding her “bragging” about consensual sex.

    2. JW Smith says:

      You are right.l.. just like OJ is innocent

  3. Cynthia says:

    And then gets a large payout….. she was NO victim

    1. That 19 year old girl was from a wealthy family. Tell me again how she prostituted herself for a paycheck.

      1. Trevor Sedis says:

        Mr. Sawmiller, stop being Capt. Save-a-ho. Women don’t bang manginas.

  4. Barb says:

    Just think, she was only 4 years older than kobes daughter

    1. Mary Mote says:

      And was proven to have had sex with someone else before Kobe that day!! She was no innocent young girl.

      1. Proven by whom? Show the proof or stfu. Dude raped a teen, period. Also, cheated on his wife in the process, but the 19 year old is suspect…

    2. Obvious Replies says:

      This happened in 2003 you idiot

  5. Eric says:

    Agreed, Sam! Sad that a teacher would use such poor judgement- he should stick to band. The idiot is also bad a geography- Newport to Calabasas is 72-75 miles, and 1.5 to 2 hours with light traffic.

  6. Naomi fernandez says:

    I’m sorry, but this teacher is way out of line! Disrespectful POS! The only thing Kobe Bryant was guilty of was being unfaithful to his wife, she forgave him. So who in the eff does BandMan think he is to judge anyone? And as for that rape allegation against him. We all know what that was about? The supposed victim was seeing 💲💲. It was her get rich quick scheme. Cause ask any woman, if you were raped, would you drop ? Heck no! I would want justice! So that he could never do it again, but why would he pay her off you ask? Because he didn’t have the time to go through the courts bs. The proceedings could of lasted up to a year sometimes longer it’s ridiculous! And this is a man who chose to travel by helicopter to avoid California traffic so he could spend more time with his family. Do you really think he’d want to waste his time in a courtroom for consensual sex. Nope! I pay her off too like the trick that she is. If that teacher would pull his head outta that tuba he would know that Kobe Bryant wasmore than a bbBb play he was a WONDERFUL FATHER, HUMANITARIAN, ROLE MODE. I could go on, but it’s obvious this teacher is a jealous hater of all things Kobe. So word of advice to him. I suggest you keep your opinion like you ass… to yourself. Because you teach in a City that adores Kobe. Anso and I’m pretty sure any number of his fans would pop you in the mouth. This is a time for grieving g.

    1. swimologist says:

      Not just a rapist, but a serial PHILANDERER as he admitted to investigating police officers.
      How is he a “wonderful” husband when he cheated on his wife numerous times?
      To get a pass, be a black celebrity. That’s all it itakes.

  7. Larry Bean says:

    Freedom of speech. The teacher is entitled to express his opinion.

    1. Tony Basselgia says:


  8. Kim Emond says:

    Typical hate speech from a lowly band teacher who needs to feel important by voicing an opinion that he knows is controversial. STFU a-hole…

    1. Mr Meener says:

      the teacher is 100% right and we have a sick society that worships idiotic ball players making obscene money. if a guy cured cancer he would be forgoton in a week

      1. jbycdmys says:

        These comments on here are pretty telling. Lots of fans of this guy seem to be wiling to gloss right over the extreme violence of his rape actions, and yet are COMPLETELY intolerant of anyone expressing even an opinion about him. That is pretty rich. If this were a white dude, they’d be burning half of LA county down to disgrace his memory. You know I am right. Who are the real haters?

  9. CA High School Teacher says:

    Seriously, everyone needs to calm down. Poor judgement by the teacher as Kobe was a member of the community. That being said, the teacher is sparking a debate that his students will, no doubt, be fired up to argue. School is a place to become exposed to differing and sometimes emotionally triggering thoughts and perspectives. The students then learn how to express themselves and grow their own thoughts and perspectives on different issues. I teach in an inner city school in California and I can tell you my own students have mixed feelings about Kobe. They all, however, agree that none of the people deserved to die in a horrible crash, especially the young girls.

  10. Phil Rose says:

    Rape is ok if an athlete does it??? Please stop elevating people who throw balls thru a hoop to God status. Trained seals can do that.

    1. Obvious Replies says:

      I bet phil cant do it very well. Mad ass and he didnt rape anyone he’s just a cheater

  11. Michael White says:

    Is it possible to have an opinion that doesn’t go along with the crowd? The teacher is entitled to his opinion, as is everyone. Not everyone thinks Bryant was a hero. That said, though, the timing and the venue were inappropriate. He just should have kept it to himself.

  12. youknowwho says:

    I agree with Larry…the teacher is entitled to his opinion. That said, perhaps a better way to handle it would’ve been to acknowledge the crash is an unfortunate reality, but tragedy happens every day and not everyone is on the same page regarding Kobe’s legacy. Our society is celebrity-obsessed, so it’s no wonder that when something tragic happens to an entertainer/public figure, people take it very personally. And of course, social media dictates that one must exercise virtue signaling in order to be accepted as part of the social media tribe.

    To be sure, it was a (preventable?) tragedy that 9 individuals died that morning, but for the week in progress (1/26 – 2/1), 19 people have already been shot in Chicago — 4 died — and the week is only half over! …and there’s no mass public mourning. And believe it or not, it’s not even a gun issue, it’s a crisis of soul. So when there’s a mass public mourning over a celebrity’s untimely demise, rest assured that it can happens to any of us. RIP Kobe and all the helo passengers, and RIP to everyone else who’s lost their life.

    1. Tony Basselgia says:

      Absolutely agree. I completely understand that Kobe was liked, loved, and admired by so many fans, but we cannot forget that there were others who also lost their lives, and have family that are mourning them. I feel sad for them because all they hear about in the news is how sad it is for Kobe’s family, and they hear nothing about what they lost. I personally think that this teacher should have not vented how he felt in the classroom. It was in poor taste, but I do not see how he did anything wrong to warrant losing his job as others think he should have done.

  13. Such a terrible person – he took his daughter to 7AM mass just before the helo crashed.
    The teacher should try a little “soul massage”.

  14. Gary Griffin says:

    Did he say something that wasn’t true?

    1. Rob says:

      Yes. He did not KILL his family. We all make choices. Statistically, it’s safer to fly than to drive. Would we be saying the same thing if he died in an auto accident, which, again, is more likely to happen than to die in a plane or helicopter crash. If that’s your standard, then maybe we should all just stay at home. Oh, but wait. Suppose a tornado, or earthquake, or landslide or even if an asteroid hits, would he be responsible for that as well? I mean he bought the house in that location. For heaven’s sake why would you buy a home that could be destroyed by a natural disaster 10 years from now?

      1. Tony Basselgia says:

        Calm down a bit now. Here is the thing, the weather was so bad that morning that even the police helicopters were not being flown. The locals said that it was some of the worst dense, low lying cloud cover that they have ever seen. I personally would not have gone up in the chopper under those conditions. Did Kobe kill everyone on board? Absolutely not. Do I believe that he was irresponsible for allowing his daughter to go up in those conditions? yes, and I say that with no disrespect. Rob, you are right when you say that anything can happen when you travel, but unless it is an emergency, most people would not drive/fly thru a hurricane, tornado, blizzard, or any other serious weather condition. We all make bad decisions in our life, but there is no reason for people to bash us when those bad decisions happen. Lets just pray for the family of all those who died in that terrible crash and not be so divisive.

  15. Catmandu says:

    The teacher is out of line period. What part of Band is athletics, politics, social ideals,… and we wonder why our education is in the toilet. Fire him and anyone else that doesn’t teach that which they were hired to teach. The rant is an opinion and that opinion has nothing to do with band.

    1. swimologist says:

      It was probably at the end of class when there’s a couple minutes before the bell rings.
      He’s allowed to have an opinion, and what he said was factual. On top of that, Bryant had numerous affairs with women, so don’t believe the hype about what a “wonderful” father and husband he was. It’s just that, HYPE. A similar White athlete wouldn’t get this bizarre uncritical
      celeb worship. FACT.

  16. craig says:

    So he can’t have his opinion in class but the left wing nutcases are allowed?

  17. steve ramos says:

    The issue here is innocent lives were lost in the terrible tragic accident!
    That teacher SHOULD NOT BE A TEACHER in today’s world! What an ASS!
    How shallow is he to make such statements!!

    1. steve ramos says:

      The issue here is innocent lives were lost in the terrible tragic accident!
      The timing of his comment is WRONG! Let someone go to that teacher’s house when a loved one has died and say… WHAT AN ASS HE WAS..

  18. Hello There says:

    Yep, he definitely was guilty of paying his way out of a rape conviction. And at the end of the day, he was a good basketball player. That’s it. Feel sorry for his daughter cause she could have amounted to something beneficial to humanity.

  19. john L says:

    This is a band teacher who should be teaching music and not giving his personal hatred toward Bryant. He should be fired immediately.

  20. Rob says:

    Well this teacher gets an “F” in sensitivity. I remember all the hubub about the rape accusation, but nothing was ever proven. If it happened, it was wrong and he should have been punished. But to basically applaud his death (not to mention the deaths of others who were only peripherally connected with him) is not OK. It certainly was not his fault. I can only wonder if this teacher ever took a plane to a destination he could have driven to.

  21. Carey Steal says:

    He is a horrible person. He is responsible for the death of eight people because he was stupid and reckless enough to take a helicopter to his daughter’s basketball practice. Well, and he’s also a rapist.

  22. Rape aside, the helicopter accident falls SQUARELY on the shoulders of the pilot! Period!

    1. Tony Basselgia says:

      You hit the bullseye with that statement. Forget weather or not Kobe was wrong for taking his daughter up in the helicopter. When it comes down to it, the owner of that helicopter is at fault. They never should have allowed that chopper to leave the ground until the weather cleared. No matter who is onboard.

      1. Hawks187 says:

        Your partially correct Tony, ultimate responsibility falls on owner of aircraft, however they have hired a professional licensed pilot, and the pilot will tell you if its safe to fly or not. Now if the pilot made the recommendation to the owner we should not fly due to weather conditions and owner ignores pilot, pilot has 2 choices fly them or refuse to fly and get them another pilot. Since there is probably no recording of said conversation we will never know what happened. I have been on some sketchy private flights and pilot said we have no concerns we are good to go, I have learned since them to ask alot more questions when there is weather. End of the day if the pilot told Kobe and his passengers we are good to go, than this is pilot error. We will never know what conversation took place between pilot and Kobe, and dont forget FAA and air traffic control should take some responsibility as well. If fog was that thick all aircraft should have been grounded, plenty of blame to go around not fair to throw it all here or there

    2. Tony Basselgia says:

      So does every other teacher in America who uses their position to spew out political trash instead of teaching their students that particular subject.

    3. Tony Basselgia says:

      Sorry Gritty. My 2nd comment was not intended to be posted here.

  23. EMI_AvILA says:

    I go to that school and he’s not even a good teacher all he does is just slump in class h shouldn’t be teaching anyone.SOMEONE SHOULD SLUMP THIS TEACHER!!!

  24. Paul says:

    The teacher is a BAND teacher. What the heck is he running his mouth off about a dead,famous basket ball player? The band teacher is a total boob!. His opinion on Kobe Bryant should have never been spoken in class. The man needs a shorter leash from the principal.

    1. Tony Basselgia says:

      So does every other teacher in America who uses their position to spew out political trash instead of teaching their students that particular subject.

  25. biffula jean says:

    Do some investigating into the case. And be careful with your slvt shaming. No, the girl was no church choir member, but that doesn’t mean she wasn’t raped. The evidence was overwhelming against Kobe. A huge payoff and the girl fades back into the woodwork, Kobe’s now wife has a monstrous diamond ring and the hero remains intact. And don’t forget there is at least one other woman who claims Kobe sexually assaulted her too. Don’t hero worship just because someone is black and a sports star.

  26. Amon says:

    He is talking about a sports figure. Everyone has an opinion about sports figures. This guy obviously is a Shaq fan and didn’t like the fact that Kobe got Shaq sent away from LA. When we start firing people for expressing an opinion about sports celebrities, half the people in corporate America will lose their jobs.

    And I think this is entirely appropriate for a classroom. When a kid expresses that they had a terrible weekend because a sports celebrity dies, who better than a teacher to bring a little reality to the situation? The life or death of a celebrity should have no real effect on someone that doesn’t know them. Perhaps the teacher went a little overboard, but schools need to be a venue of free speech where people can disagree – not a system for brainwashing everyone into a group mind-think.

  27. Tony Smith says:

    That man is so horrible. He committed the worst crime you can ever commit–he disparaged a royal; he’s a hater!!!!! He mustn’t live in our society. Fire him and let him starve to death on the streets!!!!!!!

  28. Pocket says:

    he is partly correct but lacks discernment…he got tired of glorifying Kobe and probably is frustrated he gets paid little for the work he does while Kobe got paid millions. as a man, that is a lot of what is going on for him imo. most pro athletes cheat on their wives…that is between Kobe and his wife and they seemed to work through that raising a family. i do get a critical thinker wanting to show the “other side” especially to young kids (middle school/high school). but TIMING is everything…where he went WRONG was saying Kobe killed his family…and that is very wrong! Again, his rant is with privilege…the helicopter…we all have to drive in traffic and Kobe does not. That is on him! So you can raise truth in some areas and be guilty of selfishness or a lack of awareness…transference of your own issues related through an argument or “rant”

  29. Esco Ceasar says:

    So people can kneel for the national anthem and express their opinion, but can’t express their opinion on the character of people that pass away? #Hypocrites.

  30. See this on Drudge? Go to http://www.PressCalifornia.com for more real news from California.

  31. the N.E.W.S. (north, east, west and south) is complicit in reporting this story as being real. those who research and spend time reading into the details of this story understand this was a hoaxed event. Kobe may live on as a basketball legend, his strawman identity now destroyed, but this teacher had no clue what he was saying, sadly. of course Kobe was a idol in LA for a long t ime so this is unfathomable to most… try not to be so hateful of other’s opinions, this is the barn door in Animal Farm. do the research or sit around wallowing in your idol worship, I don’t support the anger directed at this individual in the story, it’s not natural human behavior.

  32. Hammertime says:

    Oh wow, you all are so vicious. The man just died and you all are arguing about something that happened 16 yrs ago.. So may I add, he was never found guilty and charges were dropped. He apologized and even went out of his way to make sure the woman in question was taken care of.
    After then he spent time volunteering in home for abused women in LA along with 14 other charities and foundations.
    15 yrs after making a terrible mistake and working hard to make it right, I would hope I wouldn’t be remembered for my worst mistake, but for the life I lived after to right my mistake.
    For the good I tried to do, not a momentary stupidity.

  33. Jimmy Hetfield says:

    I’m getting a little bit O.D.’d on this kobe business….
    Uh, just how many other people die (whether of natural causes or by horrible accident) each day & we’re supposed to mourn them less? I don’t get it….

  34. this entire KObe Klown SHow is totally predictable and totally boring. The Low IQ media decide Kobe (gotta love the “one Name” fame that plays into the adoration meme) who’s only talent was playing with a ball, shall be UNTOUCHABLE! So, what victims group was he in? Yeah. Black. But a vey, really rich black. I hope he wasn’t GLXBTFU… Not an illegal. So, he is fair game. And wassup wit the copter to go local. Big Shot Show Off? Yeah! Unlike Thurman Munson, he didn’t fly it himself. Paid a PRO. And yet…he is still dead and so is his daughter and seven other people.
    Bad judgment. Oh Well. There will soon be another untouchable black athlete to fawn over.

  35. Michael Schuldes says:

    The worst part of all? “Counseling staff at the school have been alerted and were being prepared to deal with the issue”…what pansies….

  36. tyler1861 says:

    What is wrong with people! It is suddenly OK to sexually violate a woman against her will then bribe her to keep quiet because someone dies?? Kobe was a piece of garbage.. Garbage! But the maggot put a ball into hoop then died so no one can express the Truth about what a vile, disgusting monster he was???

  37. Chasugc says:

    Wow, I just knew the racist haters were going to come out in their jealousy. Kobe didn’t know about the weather conditions, and the conditions changed rapidly while they were in the air. It was just fog which normally lifts within a hour. It wasn’t like it was a thunder or rain storm. Kobe was just a passenger, he wasn’t responsible for allowing the flight, that was traffic control and the helicopter pilot. If you are taking an airplane flight, do you, the passenger, decide when the flight is cancelled for the weather? NO!

    I believe this teacher should be suspended for his racist insensitivity. Nine people lost their lives because of that crash and to hate on them because of some past hatred of Kobe, in a case where the charges were dropped is wrong and hateful. Kobe made a mistake in his past, and no one is perfect. But, if you are black, you must be perfect or you are going to be hated for life by the racists. Children shouldn’t be subjected to such hate and racism. We send the wrong message that you must always be perfect, regardless of whether the charges are dropped or if you serve you time, especially if you are a minority, specifically a black minority. Why is it that whenever someone hates on a black person it is their right, but when I black person asks for justice for his people, he is an evil Unamerican person? (Colin Kaepernick). They even allow our children to be subjected to hate speeches on college campuses and now in high school too. What’s next, elementary school? All because it is their right to spread hate to our children? But, we as minorities don’t have the right to ask for justice or we will lose our entire career and livelihood.

    1. jbcdmys says:

      These comments on here are pretty telling. Lots of fans of this guy seem to be wiling to gloss right over the extreme violence of his rape actions, and yet are COMPLETELY intolerant of anyone expressing even an opinion about him. That is pretty rich. If this were a white dude, they’d be burning half of LA county down to disgrace his memory. You know I am right. Who are the real haters?

      1. Larry Bean says:

        You understand the situation very well.

    2. LR says:

      Actually, daily life shows that most of the hateful talk is coming from the left in this country.
      If you do not agree with their extremely skewed beliefs and their lowering of cultural standards
      you are a target of hateful speech. That is how it is these days. I don’t have much of an opinion of Kobe Bryant, and am not a fan of basketball, but there should be no hero worship because he died in an accident. It is a tough thing when a death happens to anyone that way, but he is not deserving of honorary accolades just because his life was taken in a crash. This is just a way of generating more news stories.

      1. Larry Bean says:

        You are right.

  38. Steve D says:

    Kobe gets a Low Bar for all the obvious reasons

  39. jbycdmys says:

    The downside of living a high life can really be tough. We should not judge, but we should observe, and learn – maybe how to avoid things we don’t want to happen to us. Where am I wrong?

  40. Charles Jordan says:

    You are sure Kobe was a Rapist, you are sure sex was not consensual, you are sure Kobe shouldn’t had flew in a helicopter, you are sure Kobe damaged the lakers… Damn I need to meet this guy who in tragic days, is so sure of his opinion as if opinions didn’t stink in front of 14 years olds and was sure about the girl motives without knowing her, who was sure that winning 2 rings without Shaq after sure enough Shaq went downhill destroyed the lakers, who was sure that Kobe after cheating his wife didn’t repent, so sure he holds the truth, right or wrong there is no way any of us holds the truth or knows exactly what happened a responsible adult specially a Teacher doesn’t use opinions as absolutes to create debates or to help people think, anyone who judges needs to be judge I will love to have an insight into someone who plays smart with kids and is has to uncontrollably say his opinion at the wrong moment, maybe wait couple of weeks , maybe just say that personally you didn’t like him and leave it there, but to have your heart full of rage and go on a 4 minute rampage says a lot about who you really are.

  41. LR says:

    As a former GHS student, I am ashamed that Garfield has done nothing to correct this behavior . Teachers are suppose to inspire, respect, and teach students. Where is this rant does any of these three factors in? Administration is not doing their job and should be held accountable as well as the teacher. We have called the school to complain and were quickly hushed by saying the issue was being looked into. What a disgrace.

  42. MMaz says:

    Regarding Kobe’s extortioner – just gonna drop this here… you can watch her “freestyle rap” about it…?…. yeah…she seems legit.


  43. This kid recording the teacher, in stead of opening up and starting a conversation. Just press record, post it, step back and enjoy the ride. Throw a dog a bone. This discussion, all these comments, could have been addressed live in the classroom. That would have been an interesting thing to watch. And that’s what education should be, if you ask me. Put your phone down and form a damn opinion. Listen, think, speak, repeat.

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