Pettit

RIPLEY - Nine days after filing it, a Jackson County couple asked that the $1 million wrongful death suit they filed against the man they claim killed their son be dismissed.

Tom and Jeanie Anderson on Dec 18 asked that Jackson Circuit Judge Thomas C. Evans III dismiss their suit against Jonathan Pettit. The hand written motion on legal paper contained only a sentence expressing their desire to no longer to continue with the suit.

On Dec. 9, the Andersons, as administrators of the estate of their son, Benjamin, maintain Pettit gave Fentanyl to Benjamin at Pettit's home on Dec. 9, 2007. Primarily used for the treatment of chronic breakthrough pain, Fentanyl is a synthetic drug 100 times more powerful than morphine.

Around 1 a.m. on Dec. 9, records show, Anderson passed out as a result of the Fentanyl Pettit provided him. Though Pettit failed to render aid to Anderson, he did call paramedics who transported him to Jackson General Hospital where he later died.

According to his death certificate, Anderson died as a result of a combined cocaine and Fentanyl intoxication. His death was ruled accidental.

He was 20 years old.

Records show Pettit was indicted in 2008 on criminal charges related to Anderson's death. On May 12, he pled guilty to a charge of involuntary manslaughter, possession of a controlled substance and possession of Fentanyl patches.

A month later he was sentenced to one year in jail on the involuntary manslaughter charge, and an indeterminate term of 1-5 years in prison on both possession charges.

All sentences were to be served consecutively. He was given 540 days credit for time served.

In their suit, which they filed pro se, the Anderson alleged as a result of Pettit's "intentional, willful, reckless, wanton and unlawful conduct," they suffered "sorrow, mental anguish and solace" due to Benjamin's death.

In addition to court costs, the Anderson's sought judgment against Pettit for $1.2 million. As of presstime, Evans had yet to rule on their motion to dismiss.

Records show Pettit, 31, who is currently incarcerated at the Denmar Correctional Center in Hillsboro, is scheduled to return to court on Feb. 8 for a reconsideration of his sentence.

Jackson Circuit Court, case numbers 09-C-142 (Anderson civil) and 08-F-97 (Pettit criminal)

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