According to a lawsuit filed Thursday, Gabby Petito's father and mother accused Brian Laundrie's presumed murderer of hindering their daughter's search.
Joseph Petito, Nichole Schmidt filed a civil action in Sarasota County FL. Christopher and Roberta Laundrie reside there, but they don't give a dollar amount for possible damages. It would be more than $30,000.
Petito's body was discovered in Wyoming on Sept. 19. The cause of her death was later determined to be homicide. She died from "manual strangulation" at the least three week earlier, according to a coroner.
According to the lawsuit, Laundrie's parents made a statement on Sept. 14 supporting Petito's search. According to the civil complaint, that statement was made "in full knowledge" that Gabrielle Petito had died from her son.
"Despite the fact Joseph Petito, Nichole Schmidt requesting Christopher Laundrie, Roberta Laundrie, to inform them if their child was alive and if so, where her remains were found, Christopher Laundrie, Roberta Laundrie refused, either to Nichole Schmidt or to law enforcement," Patrick Reilly, plaintiff's lawyer, wrote.
According to the lawsuit, the defendants knew of the mental anguish and suffering that plaintiffs were going through while their daughter was missing. However, they refused to reveal her location and "acted with malice" or "great indifference".
According to the suit, "It is believed that... on or around August 28, 2021 Brian Laundrie advised Roberta Laundrie and Christopher Laundrie that he had murder Gabrielle Petito."
In the lawsuit, it is also claimed that Laundrie's parents kept his whereabouts secret in the Petito search and "were making arrangements to allow him to leave the country."
One month after Petito was discovered, Brian Laundrie's corpse was found in Florida. Laundrie, who was shot by himself, left notes claiming he was responsible. officials confirmed that.
Steve Bertolino (the lawyer for Christopher and Roberta Laundrie) denied Friday's allegations in the lawsuit.
Bertolino responded to the suit by saying that the Laundries had not commented publicly on my directions over the past several months.
"Assuming that everything the Petitos claim in their lawsuit are true, which they deny, this lawsuit doesn't change the fact the Laundries were not under any obligation to speak with law enforcement or any third party, including the Petito family. These fundamental legal principles render the Petitos' claims unfounded. "
The search to find Gabby Petito who was missing while on a cross-country trip with her boyfriend, occupied newspaper pages and cable TV newscasts this summer.
The public seemed to pay less attention to Petito's case than other missing Americans.