Mom of toddler Chloe Weigand breaks down as she recalls moment stepfather dropped 18-month-old from cruise ship
CHLOE Wiegand's devastated mom broke down as she recalled the moment her stepfather accidentally dropped the 18-month-old from the 11th deck of a cruise ship.
In a chilling video, Kimberly Wiegand sobbed as she recalled screaming "you killed Chloe" at Salvatore Anello after the toddler had slipped from his grasp.
The tragic tot plunged 150 feet to her death after Anello placed her onto a ledge 150ft from the ground aboard the Royal Caribbean Cruises’ Freedom of the Seas ship in July 2019.
"I screamed, I screamed and I know he was talking back. I said, you killed Chloe and he said, I know," the 38-year-old sobbed as she described what life was like after losing her daughter in a video shown in court obtained by the DailyMail.com.
"I know there was more talking and I don't know what it was anymore. I just remember screaming.
"I know, I know at some point, he was like down on the ground. I know he was talking, and I remember, like, I don't know if it was like, my sense of time is really messed up," she said.
Kimberly, Anello and her husband, Alan, who works as a police officer, allblame the Royal Caribbean for Chloe's death because of the design of their pool area windows.
Chloe's parents say they decided the cruise company was to blame for their daughter falling 150ft and hitting the concrete deck below.
I screamed, I screamed and I know he was talking back. I said, you killed Chloe and he said, I know.
Salvatore Anello was sentenced to three years probation by a court in San Juan, Puerto Rico, after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter in October 2020.
His attorney Michael Winkelman said Anello will serve his probation in his home state of Indiana after the tragic death of his granddaughter.
He accepted a plea deal to serve no jail time after earlier pleading not guilty to the charges of negligent homicide.
The baby girl died instantly after she fell from the window ledge that Anello believed was secured by a piece of glass.
He maintains he was unaware the window was open and said he placed her there to knock on the glass as she enjoyed to do at her brother's hockey games.
Chloe's parents Alan and Kimberly Wiegand have launched a legal claim against Royal Caribbean for negligence.
The couple argue a open window should not have been so close to a children's play area.
A judge ruled on February 3 that the company can be sued for unlimited damages.
A filing by the family read: "Royal Caribbean has demonstrably lied to this court and, in so doing, Royal Caribbean has created a false narrative to accompany Royal Caribbean's carefully selected CCTV video upon which Royal Caribbean bases its motion to dismiss."
According to court documents, Royal Caribbean said there was "no hidden danger" and that Anello "knew the window was open".
They claim he would have only had to use his "basic senses" to realise this and said surveillance footage shows the grandfather leaning through the open window just before he lifted Chloe onto the ledge.
This cruise company's motion to dismiss the case was denied by US District Judge Donald L. Graham.
Chloe's parents, of South Bend, Indiana, contend that it was "physically impossible" for Anello to lean out of the 11th floor window, as the cruise line alleged.
They have remained supportive of Anello during the legal proceedings.
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