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Gabby Petito: Net wants Brian Laundrie's 'satanic' lawyer Steven Bertolino to lose license

After confirming Brian Laundrie has been missing, Steven Bertolino is drawing intense social media flak for his legal advice
UPDATED SEP 19, 2021
Gabby Petito's family has slammed her boyfriend Brian Laundrie for not revealing to police where he last saw her (gabsprtito/Instagram)
Gabby Petito's family has slammed her boyfriend Brian Laundrie for not revealing to police where he last saw her (gabsprtito/Instagram)

The case of Gabby Petito's mysterious disappearance while on a cross-country trip with her boyfriend continues to shock people. In recent updates, Petito's boyfriend Brian Laundrie, who returned home from their trip in their van sans Petito, is missing. The update was confirmed by Laundrie's lawyer who said the family hasn't seen Laundrie since Tuesday, September 14. This is the same lawyer who had advised Laundrie to not open his mouth regarding Petito's disappearance — especially to the cops on the grounds that intimate partners are always vilified first. Identified as Steven Bertolino, the lawyer is now being slammed online with social media demanding his disbarment.

Petito was reported missing after Laundrie returned home on September 1 with the same van they had set out on their trip in. He immediately got himself a lawyer and through Bertolino, declined to cooperate with authorities. Moab police in Utah subsequently released a video of cops answering a domestic disturbance call and pulling over Petito and Laundrie's van, wherein she can be seen breaking down. An alleged argument between the couple had led to Petito attempting to slap Laundrie but neither wanted to press charges. The last time Petito was heard from was on August 26, when she texted her mom there was "No service in Yosemite". And now, Laundrie has gone missing.


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Who is Steven Bertolino?

Full name Steven Paul Bertolino, the lawyer has been representing Laundrie ever since Petito went missing. The Hofstra Law graduate has been practicing in Long Island since 1994 and his website brags of his understanding of all spheres of law and rapport with clients that has helped him acquire the moniker of a "personal attorney”. Bertolino's areas of expertise include real estate and land use law, along with business and labor law and also civil and commercial litigation. His rise to the limelight with regards to the Petito-Laundrie case happened after North Port Police Chief Todd Garrison publicly tweeted to him seeking to arrange a call with Laundrie, who's a person of interest in Petito's disappearance.

Bertolino has seemingly taken his own advice to Laundrie and kept mum after he was tweeted to by the police. However, in recent developments, he was the one to confirm that Laundrie has gone missing. The speculation was first sparked by police spokesperson Josh Taylor who said that the Laundrie family hadn’t spoken to him since Tuesday, September 14. Three days later, Bertolino confirmed that his client was indeed missing. "Be advised that the whereabouts of Brian Laundrie are currently unknown. The FBI is currently at the Laundrie residence removing property to assist in locating Brian. As of now, the FBI is now looking for both Gabby and Brian," he said in a statement.


Bertolino's controversial legal advice

Announcing that Laundrie was “last seen wearing a hiking bag with a waist strap," the North Port Police Department also revealed that Bertolino "called FBI investigators Friday night indicating the family would like to talk about the disappearance of their son”. This comes after Bertolino's statement about why he had asked Laundrie to refrain from talking to the police.

On Tuesday, the day Laundrie went missing, Bertolino had said in a statement that he "hoped that the search for Miss Petito is successful and that Miss Petito is reunited with her family." The next day, without addressing his client's disappearance, he elaborated on why Laundrie wouldn't be speaking to the police, saying: "In my experience, intimate partners are often the first person law enforcement focuses their attention on in cases like this and the warning that ‘any statement made will be used against you is true, regardless of whether my client had anything to do with Ms Petito’s disappearance." And clearly all of this has led social media to question Bertolino's motives.

Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito (Instagram/ @bizarre_design_)

'Hope you lose your license!'

"Why would an Attorney advise not to help find Gabby? Steven Bertolino is now CANCELED!" declared one user on Twitter. Another user went on a rant against the lawyer, that began with: "You NEED to open an investigation into possible disbarment of Steven Bertolino, who either covered for a criminal (Brian Laundrie), or is too incompetent to know Brian escaped from his parents home, before the barrister made a statement on the client's behalf! #GabbyPetito@NYSBA." 

The user followed up their tweet, adding: "FOOL of a lawyer, Steven Bertolino: YES anything Brian Laundrie says CAN & will be used against him (Miranda warning), but if he told the TRUTH, it would set him free, &NOT incriminate him if he did nothing wrong. I hope you lose your license! I HATE evil attorneys! #GabbyPetito." They concluded the tweet rant, sharing: "Satanic human &sub-par "attorney," Steven Bertolino: If your client did nothing wrong, he would provide exculpatory evidence of his innocence, &try to find #GabbyPetito ALL his actions indicate a guilty conscience. YOU chose to take his case on! WORST career decision of your life".





Other users added some more anger to the mix, with one writing: "Their attorney Steven bertolino clearly has no moral compass either. No one should hire this scum." One more tweeted: "Brian Laundries attorney Steven Bertolino needs to be immediately interviewed by the FBI and have his electronics searched." Another Twitter user went on a rant, sharing: "If there's no way to disbar Steve Bertolino, Laundrie's lawyer, for advising Laundrie to remain silent, inhibiting investigators and the family of Gabby Petito from finding her, there probably should be such recourse."

The user added: "What kind of monstrous lawyer thinks it's advisable to enhance a defense by withholding crucial information? Regardless of Laundrie's guilt or innocence in Gabby's disappearance, withholding crucial information ought not be an advisable strategy." They ultimately concluded: "If there's no way to disbar Bertolino for his monstrous counsel, there probably ought be."