Judge Hunter W. Carroll, who will determine whether or not a lawsuit in opposition to killer Brian Laundrie’s household will transfer ahead, invoked Depp’s defamation verdict whereas an announcement from Laundrie’s dad and mom.
The homicide of 22-year-old Petito by fiancé Laundrie whipped up a media firestorm final 12 months. Her dad and mom have filed a lawsuit in opposition to Laundrie’s dad and mom, alleging that they knew their son killed Petito and tried to assist him flee the nation.
In the lawsuit, Joseph Petito and Nicole Schmidt claimed Laundrie informed his dad and mom, Christopher and Roberta Laundrie, that he had killed his fiancée a few day after the homicide.
The Laundrie household “went on vacation knowing that Brian Laundrie had murdered Gabrielle Petito,” the grievance alleged. “It is believed they knew where her body was located, and further knew that Gabrielle Petito’s parents were attempting to locate her.”
On September 24, 2021, Laundrie’s dad and mom issued an announcement by means of their lawyer Steven Bertolino that stated, “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.”
This expression of “hope” that Petito could be reunited along with her household—at a degree when the Laundries allegedly knew she had been murdered by their son—was on the middle of a listening to in Sarasota County Circuit Court on Wednesday.
Judge Carroll heard the case and can determine whether or not the lawsuit ought to go to a jury trial.
During questioning about Bertolino’s assertion and whether or not it counted as an announcement instantly from the Laundries, Carroll referenced Johnny Depp’s defamation verdict in his trial in opposition to ex-wife Amber Heard.
“Aren’t we responsible for the words that we say when we say them?” Carroll requested, based on Radar Online.
“I mean, Johnny Depp just got found civilly liable for defamation by what his attorney said, right?”
Although Depp was awarded $10 million in damages after his high-profile defamation lawsuit in opposition to Heard, he was additionally ordered to pay $2 million to Heard in her countersuit.
The jury’s determination that Depp was chargeable for defamation rested on an announcement from her former lawyer Adam Waldman, who publicly accused Heard of constructing false sexual assault allegations and conspiring to create an “abuse hoax.”
Judge Carroll stated he would decide on the lawsuit in opposition to Laundrie’s dad and mom inside the subsequent two weeks.
Newsweek reached out to Judge Carroll for remark.