Laura Rideout appeal points finger at 'impetuous violence by sons'

May 28, 2019 06:14 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) -- Laura Rideout is serving a life sentence for killing her estranged husband and trying to cover up the murder.

She and one of her sons, Colin Rideout, were convicted in July 2017 of murder and tampering with evidence in the death of Craig Rideout. Alex Rideout, another son, was convicted of tampering with evidence. 


Laura Rideout was also found guilty of burglary because she was found inside Craig Rideout's townhouse after he was killed.

On May 2, 2019, Laura Rideout filed an appeal with the 4th Appellate Division in downtown Rochester to have the convictions overturned and her sentence reduced to 15 years to life. 

In her appeal, Laura Rideout's lawyer says the "experienced and talented defense lawyers" for her sons "joined the prosecution to prove Laura guilty." The appeal says that is "an assault on fundamental fairness." 

The appeal says Laura Rideout's trial lawyers made several motions to have her tried separately instead of with her sons but the court denied the motions. 

The appeal says the lawyers for Colin and Alex Rideout, Matthew Parrinello and Julie Cianca respectively, "acted as defacto prosecutors attempting to convince the jury that Laura, not Colin and Alex, murdered Craig, and that she forced them to help her cover up the crime." 

Now, in this appeal, Laura Rideout's lawyer writes that she didn't commit the murder. 

"This is not the plan of a reasonably intelligent adult," attorney William Clauss writes. "This is more indicative of impetuous violence by sons who thought they were helping their siblings escape an abusive father followed by a slapdash attempt to cover up their crime."

News10NBC reached out to Colin and Alex Rideout's trial attorneys.

In a text message, Julie Cianca wrote, "In my opinion, the evidence didn't prove who actually committed the murder. And without proving who committed the murder, there was no evidence that there even were any accomplices much less who they were." 

News10NBC reached Matthew Parrinello by phone. When we read the quotes from the appeal, Parrinello said, "That is 100 percent accurate and the basis of why we moved for severance [separate trials] in the first place because part of our defense was that Laura was the one that committed the murder."

Laura Rideout is in prison in Westchester County. According to the New York State Department of Corrections, she is eligible for parole in 2055. 

Colin RIdeout is serving time in Attica Prison. He is eligible for parole in 2043. 

Alex Rideout is in Greene Correctional Facility and, according to the Department of Corrections, is eligible for parole in June. 


Berkeley Brean

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