Gabby Petito’s family have faced a slight setback in their legal war with Brian Laundrie’s parents and their attorney, Steven Bertolino.
Nichole Schmidt and Joseph Petito will have to wait until 2024 to have their day in court with Chris and Roberta Laundrie.
Petito-Schmidt vs. Laundrie Civil Lawsuit Pushed Back Nine Months!
The Petito-Schmidt family is suing the Laundrie family for knowing more about their daughter’s death, and allege Chris and Roberta attempted to help Brian flee the country.
They filed the lawsuit in March 2022.
Their lawsuit also alleges the Laundrie family intentionally ignored the Petito-Schmidt families’ pleas for help with Roberta even blocking Nichole’s number and social media accounts.
Their original trial date for the civil lawsuit was set for some time in August; however, it will now take place in May 2024.
Do The Laundrie’s Know More About Gabby’s Murder?!
According to local news station WFLA, Petito-Schmidt attorney, Patrick Reilly, asked that the trial be moved to December 2023.
Bertolino requested the proceedings begin around the fall of 2024, and Matthew Luka, who is representing the Laundries in the civil case, asked that the trial begin sometime between both requested dates.
The Laundrie’s legal team filed to dismiss the trial, but Judge Hunter W. Carroll denied them.
Following this news, Gabby’s parents took to Twitter to share their excitement.
Joseph tweeted the news and wrote, “#thetruthwillberevealed #justiceforGabby #GabbyPetito.”
Nichole also tweeted “And we are so proud of our attorney Pat Reilly 👏🏻🦋 #keepgoing #wewontstop.”
Judge DENIES The Laundrie’s Trial Dismissal Request
The butterfly is a bug Gabby really loved and has become a symbol of her legacy.
People on Twitter were ecstatic to hear the news.
“That’s terrific news! The Laundries don’t stand a chance,” one person responded to his tweet.
“Truth will prevail!” another wrote.
“I can’t express how pleased I am at this judgement. Gabby and your family deserve the truth and justice. The world stands with you all,” a Gabby supporter wrote.
As previously stated, Gabby’s parents are suing the Laundries for knowing more about Gabby’s whereabouts than they let on and for taking Brian on a trip after he murdered their daughter in an attempt to flee the country.
The civil lawsuit also alleges the Laundrie family intentionally ignored the Nichole and Joseph’s pleas for help. Nichole alleged that Roberta even blocked her phone number and social media accounts.
“Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie exhibited extreme and outrageous conduct which constitutes behavior, under the circumstances, which goes beyond all possible bounds of decency and is regarded as shocking, atrocious, and utterly intolerable in a civilized community,” the filing reads.
Bertolino claimed his clients were exercising their fifth amendment rights by staying quiet.
Judge Carroll agreed the family was not required to speak about the case, but disagreed that they stayed completely silent given a statement they released when Gabby’s remains were discovered.
The Laundrie’s Actions Were “Callous & Cruel”
He called the Laundrie’s actions of blocking contact with the Petito-Schmidt’s “particularly callous and cruel.”
“If the facts of this case were truly about silence with no affirmative action by the Laundries, the court would have resolved this case in the Laundries favor on the concept of the lack of legal duty for the Laundries to act,” Carroll ruled. “Had the Laundries truly stayed silent, the court would have granted the motion to dismiss in the Laundries favor. But they did not stay silent.”
Judge Carroll referred to the Laundrie’s September 14, 2021 statement they gave regarding Gabby’s body being discovered.
The statement, issued through their lawyer, said: “It is our understanding that a search has been organized for Miss Petito in or near Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. On behalf of the Laundrie family it is our hope that the search for Miss Petito is successful and that Miss Petito is reunited with her family.”
He continued to say that if the Petito-Schmidt’s claims in the lawsuit are correct and the Laundrie’s knew Gabby was dead, “the Laundries’ statement was particularly callous and cruel, and it is sufficiently outrageous to state claims for intentional infliction of emotional distress.”