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Laundrie family files motion to dismiss Petito family lawsuit

Posted at 5:04 PM, Mar 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-31 12:20:03-04

TAMPA, Fla. — The family of Brian Laundrie has filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit from Gabby Petito's family that claimed his parents knew their son killed their daughter and tried to help him escape.

Attorney Steve Bertolino filed the 20-page motion asking a Florida judge to drop the lawsuit with prejudice. The motion claims there are no facts to support the claims of "intentional infliction of emotional distress."

"The Complaint is insufficient and deficient as a matter of law for many reasons and those deficiencies cannot be cured by an amended Complaint," the motion said.

Petito's family filed the lawsuit earlier this month against Chris and Roberta Laundrie, claiming the couple knew their son had killed Gabby as early as Aug. 28.

Brian Laundrie killed Petito in a Wyoming campground before arriving home in Florida in her van on Sept. 1. After his arrival, the Laundrie family went camping together, with Brian leaving again days later, never to return. His body was found in an environmental park near the family home after dying of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

In the motion, Bertolino said the Laundrie's were only using their right to remain silent when not discussing conversations they had with their son, adding that the Petito family lawsuit was "baseless and frivolous."

"A motion to dismiss the baseless and frivolous lawsuit commenced by Gabby Petito’s parents was filed in court. The Laundries have exercised their constitutional right to refrain from speaking and have relied on counsel to speak for them. This is not only common practice in our civilized community but it embodies the exercise of fundamental rights under the United States and Florida Constitutions. The Laundries’ rights are inalienable and the Laundries can never be liable for exercising their legal rights in a permissible way," a statement from Bertolino said in part.