Gabby Petito

January 23, 2022

Brian Laundrie’s Notebook Confession Reveals He Killed Gabby Petito

The FBI closed its months-long investigation into the death of 22-year-old Gabby Petito, announcing that Brian Laundrie is believed to be responsible for her murder.

Laundrie, 23, admitted to killing Petito in a notebook entry he wrote shortly before taking his own life. Authorities discovered the notebook, a backpack, and a revolver alongside his remains.

He was named a person of interest in his girlfriend’s disappearance on September 15, though authorities failed to deem him a suspect in her murder before his death.

The FBI didn’t release the contents of the notebook entry but stated that it “revealed written statements by Mr. Laundrie claiming responsibility for Ms. Petito’s death.”

Richard Stafford, an attorney for the Petito family, issued a statement thanking the FBI and its victim services.

“We truly appreciate the FBI’s diligent and painstaking efforts in this extremely complicated case,” Stafford said. “The quality and quantity of the facts and information collected by the FBI leave no doubt the Brian Laundrie murdered Gabby.”

Steven Bertolino, the lawyer for the Laundrie family, also released a statement following the FBI report.

“Gabby and Brian are no longer with their families and this tragedy has caused enormous emotional pain and suffering to all who loved either or both of them,” Bertolino wrote.

“We can only hope that with today’s closure of the case each family can begin to heal and move forward and find peace in and with the memories of their children. May Gabby and Brian both rest in peace.”


Brian Laundrie wrote he was responsible for Gabby Petito’s death, FBI says

January 15, 2022

Gabby Petito Case: Utah Police Made ‘Several Unintentional Mistakes’

An independent review found that Utah police made “several unintentional mistakes” when responding to a call in August that Brian Laundrie hit Gabby Petito on the side of the road in Moab.

Police body camera footage, which was widely viewed after the case gained national attention, showed officers responding to an August 12, 2021 incident after a caller said Laundrie had slapped Petito outside the Moonflower Community Co-Op grocery store.

After pulling them over nearby, the responding officers interviewed Laundrie, 23, and Petito, 22. According to the report, Petito said she hit Laundrie first, and he was treated as a victim in the incident. The officers ultimately separated the couple for just one day, driving Laundrie to a motel.

In the report, Capt. Brandon Ratcliffe of the Price City Police Department concluded that the two responding officers, Eric Pratt and Daniel Robbins, had failed to classify the police report as a domestic violence incident and file it with a prosecuting attorney, among other charges.

Laundrie later killed himself after being named the only person of interest in Petito’s death.

“Would Gabby be alive today if this case was handled differently? That is an impossible question to answer despite it being the answer many people want to know. Nobody knows and nobody will ever know the answer to that question,” Ratcliffe wrote in the report.

“I am confident and comfortable in stating the mistakes that were made were not made intentionally,” he wrote. “The officers did not know what they were doing was wrong at the time and did not make the decision to benefit themselves in any way. They both believed at the time they were making the right decision based on the totality of the circumstances that were presented.”

The city of Moab issued a statement saying that they plan to implement some of the report’s recommendations, including additional training in domestic violence incidents.

“The City of Moab believes our officers showed kindness, respect and empathy in their handling of this incident,” the statement read. “As the Moab City Police Department continues its daily mission to serve our community, efforts are underway to provide additional resources and tools to assist in addressing domestic violence incidents.”


Probe finds ‘unintentional mistakes’ in Petito police stop

November 25, 2021

Brian Laundrie’s Cause of Death Confirmed

In Sarasota County, Florida, the medical examiner confirmed that Brian Laundrie, who was found dead in a swamp last month, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Laundrie was the subject of a widespread search for over a month as investigators searched for clues in the murder of his girlfriend, Gabby Petito, during their cross-country road trip. An autopsy found that Petito had been strangled, and Laundrie was listed as a person of interest.

In a news release, the medical examiner said that Laundrie’s cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head, and it was ruled a suicide.

Laundrie’s family’s attorney, Steve Bertolino, said in a statement that the family had been made aware of the autopsy’s results.

“Chris and Roberta are still mourning the loss of their son and are hopeful that these findings bring closure to both families,” Bertolino said.

Richard Stafford, attorney for Petito’s family, said they would have no immediate comment on Laundrie’s cause of death.


Officials: Brian Laundrie Fatally Shot Himself in the Head

November 3, 2021

Florida police chief admits to ‘human error’ in Brian Laundrie case

North Port Police Chief Todd Garrison admitted to “human error” in the Brian Laundrie case.

Officers thought they spotted Laundrie outside his parents’ home on Sept. 15, but they had mistaken Laundrie for his mother.

“Yes, we made a mistake,” Garrison said. “It was human error, but I still stand behind my team.”

However, Garrison said the mistake didn’t impede the investigation since Laundrie had already left home a day earlier — and may have already been dead.

“Now we know that, by the time we became the lead agency, Brian had already left the house and presumably had already been deceased out in the Carlton Reserve,” Harrison said.

Laundrie’s body was found at a campground in Wyoming on Sept. 19.

“That guy went out there and by all accounts probably committed suicide and he was right out there where we thought he was,” said Sarasota County Sheriff Kurt Hoffman. “There was four feet of water out there at the time.”


Florida top cop admits ‘human error’ in Brian Laundrie case

October 22, 2021

Brian Laundrie’s remains found, attention shifts to his parents

The FBI’s Denver office confirmed that the remains found in a Florida nature reserve alongside a backpack are those of Brian Laundrie, who went missing last month.

The attention now shifts to his parents’ actions following the homicide of Laundrie’s girlfriend, Gabby Petito, and Laundrie’s subsequent disappearance.

Chris and Roberta Laundrie joined the search party Wednesday morning and found a bag belonging to Brian, a situation that their attorney called “happenstance.”

“As they went further in, Chris ventured off the trail into the woods. He was zigzagging in different areas, law enforcement was doing the same thing. And Roberta Laundrie was walking down the trail,” said Steven Bertolino, the Laundries’ lawyer. “At some point, Chris locates what’s called a dry bag. The dry bag is a white bag, laying in the woods, say 20 feet or so off the trail.”

Bertolino explained that law enforcement wasn’t around when Chris found it, but he didn’t want to leave the bag there near a news reporter, so he picked it up.

The Laundries reported Brian missing on Sep. 17, initially telling law enforcement he’d left their home on Sep. 14 for the Carlton Reserve. A few weeks later, Bertolino said he’d actually left home on Sep. 13.

Former federal prosecutor Neama Rahmani said the Laundries potentially committed crimes in this situation.

“Their initial actions weren’t consistent with folks who were concerned about the well-being of their future daughter-in-law,” Rahmani said. “They didn’t contact law enforcement right away, they lawyered up, they potentially gave their son a week-long head start.”


Brian Laundrie search: Attention shifts to parents after human remains found

October 14, 2021

Gabby Petito strangled weeks before her body was found, coroner says

Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue announced Gabby Petito’s cause of death at a news conference this week. Petito, 22, died of strangulation three to four weeks before her body was found on Sept. 19.

The coroner previously classified Petito’s death as a homicide but did not disclose the cause pending further results.

Blue didn’t elaborate much more on Petito’s physical condition, including indications of the method of strangulation — but he did note that she wasn’t pregnant.

Petito’s boyfriend, Brian Laundrie, is a person of interest in this case, and he remains at large.


Coroner: Gabby Petito strangled 3-4 weeks before body found

September 25, 2021

Gabby Petito case update: arrest warrant issued for Brian Laundrie

Police charged Gabby Petito’s boyfriend with unauthorized debit card use as the search for him continued.

A federal grand jury indicted Brian Laundrie for allegedly using a Capital One Bank card and personal identification number to make unauthorized withdrawals or charges worth more than $1,000 when Petito went missing. The indictment does not say who the card belonged to or disclose the nature of the charges.

Petito’s remains were found in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. The 22-year-old went missing during a cross-country road trip with Laundrie.

Officials urged anyone with information on Laundrie’s whereabouts or his role in Petito’s death to contact the FBI.


Gabby Petito case: Brian Laundrie charged with illegal bank card use

September 22, 2021

MSNBC host on Gabby Petito case: ‘missing white woman syndrome’

MSNBC’s Joy Reid raised some eyebrows with her comments regarding media coverage of Gabby Petito, the 22-year-old woman whose disappearance gained national attention.

“It goes without saying that no family should ever have to endure that kind of pain. And the Petito family certainly deserves answers and justice,” Reid said. “But the way this story has captivated the nation has many wondering, why not the same media attention when people of color go missing?”

“Well, the answer actually has a name: missing white woman syndrome. The term coined by the late and great Gwen Iffil to describe the media and public fascination with missing white women like Laci Peterson or Natalee Holloway, while ignoring cases involving missing people of color,” Reid added.

Reid went on to suggest that missing women of color don’t gain as much attention because they don’t resemble the relatives of newsroom executives.


MSNBC’s Joy Reid dismisses focus on Gabby Petito case as ‘missing White woman syndrome’

September 21, 2021

Gabby Petito’s remains found, authorities search fiance’s home

On Sunday, authorities apparently discovered Gabby Petito’s body at Grand Teton National Park, and police searched the Florida home of her fiance, Brian Laundrie, on Monday.

Video footage showed at least a dozen officers serve a search warrant to Laundrie’s parents and enter their house in North Port.

In July, Petito, 22, and Laundrie, 23, embarked on a cross-country road trip to visit national parks. Utah police released bodycam footage in which they had pulled the couple over during an argument.

Authorities found remains, which the FBI said were most likely Petito’s, in Bridger-Teton national forest on the east boundary of Grand Teton National Park. The FBI’s Charles Jones said the body resembled Petito’s description, but a cause of death was to be determined.

“On behalf of the FBI personnel and our partners, I would like to extend sincere, sincere, and heartfelt condolences to Gabby’s family,” Jones said. “As every parent can imagine, this is an incredibly difficult time for the family and friends. Our thoughts and prayers are with them. We ask that you all respect their privacy as they mourn the loss of their daughter.”


Gabby Petito: Florida police search home of fiance after remains found

September 18, 2021

Gabby Petito’s boyfriend remains silent on her disappearance

On Sept. 1, Brian Laundrie returned home in North Port, Florida, from an extensive road trip without his girlfriend, Gabby Petito. He didn’t report her missing and refused to speak with authorities or her family.

Laundrie is the subject of extreme criticism for neglecting to speak or cooperate with authorities to find the missing 22-year-old, as a party searches Grand Teton National Park for any sign of her whereabouts.

Petito’s father told North Port police that Laundrie’s silence was cruel and unusual.

“If you genuinely did nothing wrong, and I have no idea, I can’t even ask what you know, I can only take this attitude as cruel and heartless,” Joe Petito said.

The couple were on a road trip to the western US and expected to arrive in Portland around Halloween. Laundrie returned to his parent’s house in North Port, where the couple lives, in the couple’s van without Petito.


Gabby Petito’s father slams boyfriend for staying silent

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