The grandfather of 18-month-old Chloe Wiegand, who fell to her death on a cruise ship, put his head out of the open window she fell from and dangled her over the edge, according to video Royal Caribbean claims in court documents.
The video, mentioned in new court papers obtained by WTHR, was part of the paper work Royal Caribbean Cruises included in their court filing, asking that the family’s wrongful death lawsuit against them be dismissed, citing negligence and claiming the granddad leaned out of the window for several seconds before lifting Chloe to it.
“His actions, which no reasonable person could have foreseen, were reckless and irresponsible and the sole reason why Chloe is no longer with her parents,” the cruise line wrote.
Salvatore Anello, Chloe’s grandfather, had previously claimed that the pair were in a play area on the cruise ship in July, and he thought the window she fell out of was closed. He said when Chloe went to bang on it, she fell from the 11th floor.
Royal Caribbean says the new video shows that Anello held Chloe out of the window for more than 30 seconds before the fall.
Anello was previously charged with negligent homicide by police in Puerto Rico, and the Wiegand family then filed a suit against the cruise company. The family’s attorney Micheal Winkleman previously said the cruise line made it difficult to decipher whether windows were open or closed on the ship.
This week, Winkleman released a statement to CBS News, saying, “It is clear that Royal Caribbean’s tactic is to blame Chloe’s grandfather rather than to accept that Royal Caribbean did not implement industry standards for toddler safety aboard its ships which ultimately led to Chloe’s tragic death.”
“Royal Caribbean has premised its defense in this case and its blame on Chloe’s grandfather by supplying two deceptive views from its CCTV cameras to the court and the Puerto Rico authorities,” the statement continued.