The lawsuit was filed on Thursday in Sarasota County, Florida – where Christopher and Roberta Laundrie live. The lawsuit does not declare a specific monetary amount, but notes that it would exceed $30,000, NBC News reported.
"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 lawsuit alleges, according to Fox News. "As a direct and proximate result of the willfulness and maliciousness of Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie, Joseph Petito and Nichole Schmidt had been caused to suffer pain and suffering, mental anguish, inconvenience, loss of capacity for enjoyment of life experienced in the past and to be experienced in the future."
The civil suit states, "It is believed ... that on or about August 28, 2021, Brian Laundrie advised his parents, Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie, that he had murdered Gabrielle Petito."
The civil action reportedly claims that Laundrie's parents were attempting to provide their son with passage out of the country to flee authorities.
Following an intense manhunt led by the FBI in the area near the home of Laundrie's parents, Brian's remains were discovered in Florida's Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in late October 2021. Autopsy results found that the 23-year-old Laundrie committed suicide and died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in a swampy park.
"Despite the fact that Joseph Petito and Nichole Schmidt implored Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie to tell them if their daughter was alive, and if she was not, where her remains were located, Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie refused to respond to either Joseph Petito and Nichole Schmidt, or law enforcement," wrote the plaintiff's lawyer Patrick Reilly.
Steve Bertolino – Christopher and Roberta Laundrie's lawyer – denied the accusations in the lawsuit.
"As I have maintained over the last several months, the Laundries have not publicly commented at my direction which is their right under the law," Bertolino said in a statement on Friday.
“Assuming everything the Petitos allege in their lawsuit is true, which we deny, this lawsuit does not change the fact that the Laundries had no obligation to speak to law enforcement or any third-party including the Petito family," Bertolino added. "This fundamental legal principle renders the Petito’s claims to be baseless under the law."