VENICE, Fla. (WFLA) — A Florida decide granted a movement Tuesday so as to add a brand new defendant to the lawsuit filed by Gabby Petito’s parents towards the mother and father of Brian Laundrie – the Laundries’ household lawyer.
Choose Danielle Brewer dominated that the Petito household and their attorneys didn’t abuse their privilege to amend their lawsuit and that the modification itself was not futile.
Petito’s mother and father, Joe Petito and Nichole Schmidt, sought to add Laundrie family attorney Steven Bertolino to the suit towards Brian’s mother and father, Chris and Roberta Laundrie.
“Gabby was there with us,” Schmidt instructed Nexstar’s WFLA. “I may really feel her.”
“[Gabby’s parents] are completely happy,” mentioned Pat Reilly, the lawyer for Petito and Schmidt. “They’ve been by rather a lot. They’ve needed to hearken to plenty of statements made by Mr. Bertolino on behalf of the household, statements that had been typically hurtful to them.
“And so, they imagine by bringing Mr. Bertolino in, they finally will get justice for what has occurred.”
Bertolini tells WFLA he’ll assess his authorized choices, together with whether or not to file a movement to dismiss, till he’s served with the lawsuit.
“The choice was not sudden,” Bertolino mentioned. “This incident, like all others, will work out in the long run. Somehow.”
“As soon as I’m [served] I’ll interact counsel and proceed accordingly.”
Bertolino isn’t representing the Laundries on this case, however continues to work with them as their common counsel.
Petito’s mother and father are suing the Laundries for allegedly realizing their son had murdered Petito and did nothing however have Bertolino problem an announcement expressing hope that Petito could be discovered.
“It’s believed that on the time the September 14, 2021 assertion was issued, the Laundries and Steven Bertolino knew that Gabby Petito was deceased and that underneath these circumstances, the assertion was insensitive, cold-hearted, and outrageous,” Reilly mentioned.
“Thus, after a lot consideration, the mother and father of Gabby Petito filed a Movement for Depart of Court docket this afternoon asking the courtroom for permission to file a Second Amended Grievance so as to add Steven Bertolino as a defendant within the motion. Motions of this sort are liberally granted by the courtroom. Joseph Petito and Nichole Schmidt are looking for justice and accountability for the lack of their daughter and the attendant hurt induced them.”
Legal professional Matt Luka, who argued towards including Bertolino to the lawsuit, claimed the deadline for the modification had handed.
In line with Luka, the choice so as to add Bertolino isn’t a common incidence. He mentioned Bertolino will probably file his personal movement to dismiss the lawsuit.
“We’re hopeful that the decide grants Mr. Bertolino’s movement to dismiss if he does file one, and that this received’t be a problem as soon as we get to trial,” he mentioned.
Final yr, Choose Hunter W. Carroll dominated towards the Laundries’ movement to dismiss the lawsuit. Carroll additionally denied a movement to restrict the scope of the Laundrie’s depositions, that are anticipated to happen within the coming months.
The depositions will mark the primary time the mother and father of Petito and Laundrie will likely be in the identical room since Petito’s homicide and Laundrie’s suicide in 2021.