Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, the autopsy results revealed Tuesday – as her fiance Brian Laundrie spends his fourth week on the run from law enforcement.

Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue announced the cause of the 22-year-old van-life vlogger’s death in a press briefing Tuesday afternoon.

‘In the manner of death we find the cause and manner to be cause death by strangulation and manner is homicide,’ he said.

Blue did not provide a specific date for Petito’s death, estimating ‘three to four weeks from the time the body was found.’ 

Petito’s body was discovered in a campsite close to the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on September 19 – eight days after her family reported her missing and 22 days after the last reported sighting of her alive of her on September 27. 

The coroner declined to provide any further details about bruising or injuries found on Petito’s body, and would also not reveal whether any drugs had been found in her system through toxicology tests – saying only the cause and manner of death is released in the state of Wyoming. 

Blue also refused to confirm whether Petito’s body was buried or left in the open, or whether she was killed at the site she was found or taken there after.  

The coroner did confirm that Petito was not pregnant at the time of her death – after internet sleuths suggested she could gave been.  

The coroner said he could not comment on whether his findings pointed to Laundrie being the murderer.

‘I cannot make any comment about any suspects as we are not involved in that part of the investigation,’ he said.

‘So who committed the homicide is really to be confirmed by law enforcement.’    

The coroner previously ruled the manner of Petito’s death a homicide but the cause of her death was not disclosed, pending further autopsy results. 

In Wyoming, homicide includes varying degrees of murder and manslaughter and so the circumstances of her death were a mystery until now.  

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue gave an update on the autopsy for Gabby Petito, 22, (pictured) in a briefing Tuesday

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

A memorial of stones arranged in a cross pattern at the Spread Creek Dispersed Campsite east of the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on September 20 – where Petito’s body was found one day earlier 

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

A pink ribbon tied to bushes near where witnesses said they saw the couple’s parked on the side of the road near the campsite

The FBI has been focusing its investigation around the belief she was killed between August 27 and August 30. 

The last reports of Petito being seen alive were on August 27 when witnesses said they saw the couple involved in a ‘commotion’ in a restaurant in Wyoming. 

That same day, Petito’s mom Nichole Schmodt received an ‘odd’ text message from her daughter’s phone where she referred to her grandfather as ‘Stan’ – sending alarm bells that something was wrong.

On August 30, her mom received the last text message from Petito’s phone reading: ‘No service in Yosemite.’ Petito’s phone has never been found.  

Laundrie, 23, allegedly used Petito’s stolen bank card to spend around $1,000 between August 30 and September 1 and returned to his family’s home in North Port, Florida, on September 1. 

Laundrie is the sole person of interest in his fiancee’s disappearance and death but has not yet been charged in connection with it.

It is not clear if he is even still alive to potentially face charges. 

A warrant was issued for his arrest on September 23 over the stolen Capitol One Bank card. The attorney for Petito’s family said last week the card belonged to her. 

Petito set off on a once in a lifetime four-month-long trip with Laundrie on July 2, traveling across America in the couple’s white campervan and documenting their adventures on YouTube.  

On September 1, Laundrie returned to his family’s home in North Port, Florida, without his fiancee but driving their van. 

Laundrie did not report her missing and, in the days that followed, he and his parents allegedly ignored her concerned family’s pleas for information about her whereabouts.

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue (pictured) previously ruled the manner of Petito’s death a homicide but the cause of her death was pending further autopsy results

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito. He has been on the run for more than three weeks following their doomed campervan trip

Petito was reported missing on September 11 by her mom and police visited the Laundrie’s home. 

But the Laundrie family lawyered up and refused to let cops speak to the 23-year-old about his fiancee’s whereabouts.

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

On September 17, two days before Petito’s body was discovered, Laundrie’s parents Christopher and Roberta told cops their son had gone missing.  

Their version of events has changed in the weeks that followed – first telling authorities Laundrie had left their home to head to the Carlton Reserve nature park on September 14 and didn’t return.

Now, the fugitive’s parents have claimed they actually ‘believe’ Laundrie set off from their home one day earlier on September 13, meaning he had a four-day headstart before they finally reported him missing to authorities. 

The exact timing of when Laundrie went on the run is not clear.   

Police revealed last week that they did not see or speak to Laundrie at all after Petito was reported missing. 

It is not clear if authorities have any evidence of Laundrie even being at the family home prior to September 13.        

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

The young couple were stopped by police in Moab, Utah, back on August 12 after a witness reported seeing a man slapping a woman. Bodycam footage showed Gabby Petito telling cops Brian Laundrie had hit her

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

The video shows a cop pointing out ‘new’ marks on Petito’s face and arm and asking if Laundrie had hit her, to which she replies: ‘I guess’ 

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

Meanwhile, Laundrie instantly defends himself and pushes the blame onto Petito as soon as the cop arrives on the scene

The young couple were stopped by police in Moab, Utah, back on August 12 after a witness reported seeing a man slapping a woman outside a grocery store before driving off in a white van.

Bodycam footage has revealed Petito told cops Laundrie had hit her and cut her face by grabbing her ‘with his nail’.

The video shows a cop pointing out ‘new’ marks on Petito’s face and arm and asking if Laundrie had hit her, to which she replies: ‘I guess.’

‘He like grabbed me with his nail, and I guess that’s why it looks, I definitely have a cut right here. I can feel it, when I touch it it burns,’ she tells the officer. 

The 22-year-old quickly backtracks and defends her fiance saying she ‘hit him first’ when he locked her out of their van and refused to let her in.  

Laundrie meanwhile instantly defends himself and pushes the blame onto Petito for the altercation as soon as the cops arrive on the scene.

He claims Petito was ‘really worked up’ and that he ‘was just trying to push her away’ when asked about allegations he had hit her. 

Bodycam footage from one Moab officer was released when Petito was still a missing person, showing Petito telling the officer she slapped Laundrie, while he is seen showing the cop scratches on his face and arm, which he claims were caused when she ‘hit me with her phone’.

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

, Gabby Petito was killed by strangulation, autopsy reveals, The Evepost National News

The pair had been traveling on a cross-country trip together since July 2, when they left New York. Petito was reported missing on September 11

A second officer’s camera was released on September 30, with some of the previous inaudible comments by the couple revealed for the first time.  

The cops determined Petito was ‘the primary aggressor’ and separated them for the night.  

The domestic incident less than two weeks before she was last seen alive. 

A probe has been launched into the police handling of the August 12 incident and Moab City Police Department Chief Bret Edge has since taken a leave of absence pending the investigation.  

Meanwhile, the manhunt for Laundrie has entered its fourth week with the search continuing to focus on the Carlton Reserve, close to the Laundrie family home.

Laundrie’s dad Christopher joined the search last Thursday as his family continues to face mounting scrutiny over what they know.  

The FBI is also investigating 11 alleged sightings of Laundrie along the Appalachian Trail near the North Carolina-Tennessee border. 

Timeline of Gabby Petito case

  • July 1: Gabby Petito and her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie left Blue Point, New York for a cross-country road trip
  • August 12: Police in Moab, Utah respond to a domestic incident involving the couple
  • Aug. 17: Laundrie allegedly flies back to Florida to ‘clear out a storage unit’   
  • Aug. 21: Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, has his last FaceTime video call with his daughter who was in Salt Lake City, Utah 
  • Aug. 23: Laundrie flies back to Utah to ‘rejoin Gabby’ on their trip 
  • Aug. 24: Petito is last seen at a hotel in Salt Lake City with Laundrie
  • Aug. 25: Petito makes final call to her mother, Nicole Schmidt, saying she was in Grand Teton National Park
  • Aug. 25 or 26: The couple chats with the owner of a shop called ‘Rustic Row’ in Victor, Utah for about 20 minutes 
  • Aug. 27: Video of Petito’s van was taken by blogger Jenn Bethune, of Red White & Bethune, around 6.30 pm at the Spread Creek Campground; Witnesses say they saw a ‘commotion’ with the couple at Merry Piglets Tex-mex restaurant in Jackson, Wyoming – if accurate, this appears to be the last known sighting of Petito 
  • Aug. 29: The day that Wisconsin TikToker Miranda Baker claimed that she and her boyfriend were approached by Laundrie at Grand Teton National Park and asked them for a ride at 5.30pm; Schmidt says she is not entertaining this claim and believes it possibly factual
  • Aug. 30: Schmidt receives the last text from Petito: ‘No service in Yosemite’
  • Sept. 1: Laundrie returns to his parents’ home in North Port, Florida in a van without Petito
  • Sept. 6-7: Laundrie and his parents visit Fort De Soto campsite in Florida
  • Sept. 11: Schmidt reports Petito missing to authorities in New York; Petito and Laundrie’s van was impounded by police in Florida that same day
  • Sept. 12: Grand Teton National Park rangers search for Petito
  • Sept. 13: Laundrie’s lawyer says on October 5 that his parents now ‘believe’ this was the day they last saw him heading for a hike
  • Sept. 14: Laundrie issues a statement about Petito’s disappearance through his lawyer; Laundrie’s parents claim on September 17 that Laundrie left his parents’ home for a hike this day and they hadn’t seen from him since 
  • Sept. 15: Laundrie is officially named a person of interest in Petito’s case
  • Sept. 17: Laundrie family attorney confirms his whereabouts are unknown
  • Sept. 18: North Port police and the FBI start searching the Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County for missing Brian Laundrie
  • Sept. 19: Bethune realizes she has video of Petito’s van around 12am and submits the FBI with the footage 10 minutes later; Officials announce a body was found near Grand Teton National Park that matched Petito’s description in the afternoon
  • Sept. 21: Coroner confirms remains found in Grand Tetons belong to Petito. Her death is ruled a homicide but her cause of death is still under invesetigation
  • Sept. 20 – 22: FBI and North Port police continue search for Laundrie in Carton Reserve 
  • Sept. 22: Neighbors say they saw the Laudrie family pack up their detached camper on the day Gabby was reported missing. DailyMail.com photos show the camper was back in the driveway two days later, on September 13 
  • Sept. 23: FBI issues an arrest warrant for Laundrie for ‘use of unauthorized access device’ for fraudulently using a Capitol One Bank debit card that was not his between August 30 and September 1 to spend $1,000; A probe is launched into the police handling of the Utah police incident on Aug. 12; Laundrie’s parents visit their attorney in Orlando 
  • Sept. 25: Dog the Bounty Hunter joins the search for Laundrie 
  • Sept. 26: A funeral is held for Petito in Holbrook, New York, and her family launch a charity to help parents find missing children 
  • Sept. 27: Manhunt for Laundrie in the Carlton Reserve is scaled back after 10 day search doesn’t find him. Dog the Bounty Hunter says Laundrie and his parents stayed at Fort De Soto Park from September 1-3 and September 6-8 – and that on the latter visit only the parents left 
  • Sept. 28: Laundrie’s mom is accused of using a burner phone to contact her son Sept. 29: Documents reveal Laundrie’s mom canceled a reservation for the Fort De Soto Park campsite for two from September 1 to 3 and booked for three from September 6 to 8; FBI seizes surveillance footage from site; FBI investigates lead Laundrie bought a burner phone on September 14; Dog the Bounty Hunter searches the area near Fort De Soto finding a recently drunk can of Monster Energy at a makeshift campsite deep in the woods 
  • Sept. 30: Bodycam footage from a second officer at the August 12 incident is released showing a distressed Petito admitting Laundrie hit her; FBI agents collect more evidence from the Laundrie home 
  • Oct. 1: It emerges Laundrie’s sister had contact with him after she said she did 
  • Oct. 2: A hiker along the Appalachian Trail claims to have seen Laundrie near the border of Tennessee and North Carolina 
  • Oct. 3: Investigators searched the area on the Appalachian trail for any signs that Laundrie had been there  
  • Oct. 4: Laundrie’s sister told protestors outside her home that her family has been ignoring her after they rebuked her story and that she does not know where her brother is
  • Oct 5: Laundrie’s sister appeared on Good Morning America to say she would turn her brother in if she knew where he is; The Laundrie attorney says his parents now ‘believe’ he went on the run one day earlier than they first claimed (September 13 not 14) meaning he had a four-day headstart before they reported him missing to authorities; The attorney also says Laundrie flew from Utah to Florida on Aug. 17 without Petito to clear out a storage unit then returned on Aug. 23; A hiker reports a sighting of a person he believed to be Laundrie along the Appalachian Trail near the Tennessee border
  • Oct 6: Petito’s parents and step-parents appear together on Dr. Phil to discuss their daughter’s death. Her family paints a vivid picture of the scene where her body was found and encourages Laundrie to turn himself in; The Laundrie family lawyer says his father Christopher went to look for him on the night of Sept. 13 when he didn’t return from the park
  • Oct. 7: Laundrie’s father Christopher joins FBI agents on the search for his son at the Carlton Reserve but the search brings up no clues; FBI says it is also investigating 11 alleged sightings of Laundrie along the Appalachian Trail near the North Carolina-Tennessee border; investigators confirmed neither Petito or Laundrie’s phones were found in the couple’s campervan
  • Oct. 8: North Port Police spokesperson says there is a ‘lot of oddness’ with Laundrie’s parents handling of the situation and that ‘a lot of things that didn’t make sense’ about their version of events
  • Oct. 12: Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue will hold a press conference to share more details about Petito’s death

 

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