Gabby Petito news – latest: FBI returns to Laundrie home as father asks mourners to be ‘inspired’ by daughter

·59-min read

Gabby Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, said during her memorial service that he hoped people would be inspired by his daughter’s life to pursue their dreams, and also called on those in bad relationships to leave them “now.” Last night, Ms Petito’s mother thanked the public for their support. Ms Petito’s family have also established a foundation in her name. The foundation will assist the families of missing people.

Police resumed their search of the Carlton Reserve on Saturday morning, marking the eighth straight day in the hunt Brian Laundrie, a spokesperson said. Although the major part of the search ended on Friday evening, over the weekend investigative crews will focus on “areas of more likelihood”.

On Thursday night, the FBI announced that a federal arrest warrant had been issued in relation to the death of Ms Petito.

“While this warrant allows law enforcement to arrest Mr Laundrie, the FBI and our partners across the country continue to investigate the facts and circumstances of Ms Petito’s homicide,” said Special Agent in charge Michael Schneider.

“We urge individuals with knowledge of Mr Laundrie’s role in this matter or his current whereabouts to contact the FBI.”

Authorities have not said why they are convinced Mr Laundrie, who police call a “person of interest” in the case, may still be somewhere inside the more than 24,000-acre Carlton Reserve near his home in North Port, Florida, more than a week after he told family members he was headed there to hike alone.

Read More

Gabby Petito: Everything we know about YouTuber’s mysterious disappearance on road trip

Where is Brian Laundrie? Police hunt switches to missing boyfriend after Gabby Petito remains discovered

Gabby Petito: 911 call reveals witness saw Brian Laundrie ‘hitting’, ‘slapping’ girlfriend days before her disappearance

Gabby Petito: A timeline of the social media star’s disappearance

Key points

  • Search for Laundrie enters second week...

  • ...as images reveal scale of ongoing manhunt

  • FBI returns to Brian Laundrie's home

  • Brian Laundrie left home without cellphone and wallet, source says

  • Second woman says she gave Brian Laundrie a ride in Wyoming

  • Witness says ‘aggressive’ Laundrie argued with waiters on last sighting with Petito

  • ‘Still no sign of Laundrie this morning,’ says CNN reporter

  • Neighbours claim Laundries went camping when son returned from trip with Petito

  • FBI call for public to help search for Laundrie

Gabby Petito’s father has message for all women in toxic relationships

07:17 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Gabby Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, issued a message to all women in toxic relationships at the 22-year-old YouTuber’s memorial service on Sunday. More than 1,000 mourners attended the service at the Petitos’ family home in New York. Mr Petito asked them to remember his daughter and to take inspiration from her life.

Read the full story here:

Gabby Petito’s father gives message to women in toxic relationships at her funeral

FBI visits Brian Laundrie’s home

06:59 , Maroosha Muzaffar

With Brian Laundrie still believed to be in “hiding” in the Carlton Reserve in Sarasota, Florida, FBI agents have visited the Laundrie family home to collect some of his personal belongings. The reason - according to the Laundrie family’s lawyer - is to use in “DNA matching”.

Read the full story here:

FBI visits Laundrie home to investigate DNA match

Gabby Petito’s mother says she was planning trip for a year

06:35 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Gabby Petito’s mother Nicole Schmidt has said that the 22-year-old had been planning for a year for her trip across the country visiting national parks with her boyfriend.

Nichole Schmidt told CBS News in an interview she knew “she wanted to take this trip”. She added: “She had told me about it probably a year before it started.”

Gabby Petito’s body was found last week on Sunday and the autopsy confirmed that it was her.

The FBI said that she was a victim of a homicide and her boyfriend Brian Laundrie was named a “person of interest” in the case. Last week, the FBI also announced that Mr Laundrie is now subject to a federal arrest warrant, on a fraud charge.

Law enforcement agencies have been searching the 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve for Mr Laundrie for about a week now.

The police have said that they are “scaling back” the search and will keep it “targeted based on intelligence.”

Moderator of Gabby Petito subreddit calls on members to help solve other cases

06:00 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The moderator of the Gabby Petito subreddit channel on Reddit, which currently boasts 129,000 members, has urged the community to “look into other missing persons’ cases” in the country.

The statement issued on Sunday adds that “it is a tragic fact that people go missing every day. The way to move forward is not by dividing ourselves but rather by familiarising ourselves with the statistics, and more importantly, the resources available to us all to better prevent something like this from happening to anyone in the future”.

The statement said that the moderator “did not foresee the onslaught of attention and interest” in the Petito case.

Interest in the case has seen renewed demands for similar attention to other missing person cases.

The statement said: “There have been an extremely high number of posts related to race, comparisons of other cases & how they were handled, as well as speculation about why people care about this case. We recognise that there are numerous missing persons across the globe, many of whom do not choose to disappear. All of these people are loved and missed by someone.”

Meanwhile, the family of Daniel Robinson — the 24-year-old geologist who went missing in June this year — are calling for more action and an upgrade to a criminal investigation.

Deb Haaland, the first Native American cabinet secretary had also said last week that her heart goes out to the Petito family, but that she also grieves for “so many Indigenous women” whose families have endured similar heartache “for the last 500 years”.

Rewards total $30,000 for tips on Brian Laundrie

05:23 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The cash reward for any information that leads the law enforcement authorities to arrest Brian Laundrie now totals $30,000.

A neighbour of the Petito family, Jerry Torres, had initially offered $5,000 for any tips. It was later increased to $10,000 with help from Steve Moyer, the former deputy chief of police for Sarasota, Florida.

Mr Moyer had said that “money gets people to talk.”

Last week, a personal injury law firm — Boohoff Law — announced that it was offering $20,000 for any information on the whereabouts of Mr Laundrie, who is believed to be hiding in Carlton Reserve in Sarasota.

Dispatch audio confirms witness described Laundrie as aggressor during Moab argument

05:16 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The dispatch audio of the “domestic” incident between Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito last month has revealed that the caller did inform the officers that Mr Laundrie had been the aggressor.

Police had tried to portray Petito as the one hitting her boyfriend.

The Moab Police department is to be investigated over its handling of the incident that was also captured on a bodycam video.

The city officials in Moab had said that they launched a probe into the officers who handled the incident on 12 August.

Experts had earlier claimed that the Utah officers “might not have had all information” when responding to the Moab incident.

The dispatch audio was first obtained by Fox 13 Utah.

Police scaling back search for Brian Laundrie

04:35 , Maroosha Muzaffar

North Port Police has said that the search for Brian Laundrie will be “scaled back and targeted based on intelligence” after more than a week of search teams combing through the 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve in Florida.

Josh Taylor, a spokesperson for the North Port Police Department said on Sunday night that since the FBI has taken over the search for the missing boyfriend of 22-year-old Gabby Petito — whose body was found last week in a national park in Wyoming — the search will be scaled back.

He said that “hopefully, water will lower in areas hard to currently access.”

He added: “I don’t think you’re going to see those large scale types of efforts this week.”

On Sunday, more than 1000 mourners attended the memorial service for Petito at a funeral home near her hometown of Blue Port, New York.

Meanwhile, a rancher had earlier said that there was “no surviving” in the Carlton Reserve where Mr Laundrie is believed to be hiding.

The disappearance of Daniel Robinson

Sunday 26 September 2021 23:00 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s disappearance has sparked called for more equal coverage of other missing person’s cases. The family of geologist Daniel Robinson, who disappeared into the Arizona desert on 23 June, are among those begging the public to pay attention to their situation.

The Independent’s Shiela Flynn and Justin Vallejo explain everything currently know about Mr Robinson’s disappearance in their story below...

Everything we know about missing geologist Daniel Robinson

Everything we know about the disappearance of Lauren Cho

Sunday 26 September 2021 22:30 , Graig Graziosi

In the wake of Gabby Petito’s disappearance and death, there has been a renewed public interest in missing person cases. The family of Lauren Cho, who went missing on 28 June, has begged the public to give her the same attention Ms Petito received.

The Independent has more on Ms Cho’s disappearance below...

Everything we know about Lauren Cho, who went missing in California desert

What is Gabby Petito’s family experiencing behind the scenes?

Sunday 26 September 2021 22:00 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s family was thrust into the national spotlight when the story of her daughter’s disappearance captured the public’s attention.

Matthew Searle has worked with thousands of families experiencing similar situations to the Petito and Schmidt families’, and shared his insight with The Independent.

Read his perspective below...

What Gabby Petito’s family are probably experiencing behind the scenes

A personal account of living through a missing person’s case

Sunday 26 September 2021 21:35 , Graig Graziosi

After her sister went missing and was later found dead, Jennifer Stavros knows what it’s like to live through the pain of a missing person investigation.

She shared her story with The Independent. Read her account below...

Like Gabby Petito, my sister went missing then was found dead

A timeline of events in the Gabby Petito story

Sunday 26 September 2021 21:19 , Graig Graziosi

Keep up to date with developments in the Gabby Petito story.

The Independent has compiled a complete timeline of events dating back to the day Ms Petito and Mr Laundrie left on their road trip.

Check out the timeline below...

A timeline of the death of Gabby Petito

A Florida rancher with 30 years of experience in the swamp says there’s “no surviving” in the Carlton Reserve

Sunday 26 September 2021 20:29 , Graig Graziosi

A Florida rancher with 30 years of experience navigating the same swamps the North Port police have been searching for eight days in hopes of locating Brian Laundrie said there is “no surviving” the swamps.

“I’ve been in the woods in and out all my life … I have learned a lot in my life, and one thing I know is no one is gonna survive out there for two weeks on foot,” Alan McEwen told Fox News.

Gabby Petito’s mother responds to swell of public support

Sunday 26 September 2021 20:07 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s mother offered a public statement for the first time in more than a week last night in a Facebook post thanking people for their support.

“As I scroll through all the posts, my heart is full of love. I wish I could reach out and hug each and every one of you!!! Your support has been so overwhelming and we are so filled with gratitude. Please know what you are all doing for us does not go unnoticed, and with all of you by our side, we will get #justiceforgabby,” she wrote.

The post can be found here.

Missing geologist’s family flies to Arizona to demand action

Sunday 26 September 2021 19:46 , Graig Graziosi

The family of missing geologist Daniel Robinson has flown to Arizona to demand assistance in the search for the missing man. Calls for equal treatment of missing people have increased in the wake of wall-to-wall media coverage of Gabby Petito’s disappearance.

Mr Robinson disappeared on 23 June after he left a dig site seemingly confused and without telling anyone where he was going. He was last seen driving off into the desert.

The Independent’s Sheila Flynn has more in the story below...

Missing geologist’s family flies to Arizona to demand police action

Full comments from Gabby Petito’s father and stepfather

Sunday 26 September 2021 19:30 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, and stepfather, James Schmidt, spoke during a memorial service held in Blue Point, New York, this afternoon.

Watch their comments in full in the video below.

Neighbour says family deserves ‘answers'

Sunday 26 September 2021 19:14 , Bevan Hurley

Alexandra Kaluta said she was a neighbour of the Schmidt family and had come to the memorial service to pay her respects.

“This hit close to home for me because I recently survived a very abusive relationship, very similar to what she experienced and I know in my heart that she did nothing wrong. She was just in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong person. I feel like it could have been me. I really hope there’s some type of closure for the family. They deserve answers.”

FBI collection of items for DNA matching materials “routine,” family lawyer says

Sunday 26 September 2021 19:13 , Graig Graziosi

The FBI collecting personal items for use in DNA matching is “routine,” Laundrie family attorney Steven Bertolino told reporters.

Earlier this afternoon FBI agents entered the Laundrie home to collect Brian Laundrie’s personal items for use in DNA matching.

FBI enters Laundrie house

Sunday 26 September 2021 19:04 , Graig Graziosi

The FBI reportedly entered the Laundrie’s house again today.

News Nation Now Reporter Brian Entin said the authorities were in the house for three minutes to collect items of interest belonging to Mr Laundrie to help them with DNA matching.

School friend recalls Ms Petito as ‘really nice girl'

Sunday 26 September 2021 18:54 , Bevan Hurley

Dominic Castiglione, a school friend of Gabby Petito, attended the memorial service.

He said Ms Petito transferred to his school district in 8th grade after Hurricane Sandy hit. They were in a few classes together.

“We ended becoming pretty close friends and at the end of that school year I asked her to the school dance and we ended up going together. She was a really nice girl. Really pretty, obviously, and I had a huge crush on her.”

He said he wanted to see Mr Laundrie brought to justice.

“Rotting away in a cell while being alive is better than being dead because you escape in a way,” Mr Castiglione said.

Mr Laundrie has been charged with bank fraud for allegedly using a debit card that didn’t belong to him after Ms Petito’s death. He has not been charged with any crime related to Ms Petito’s death.

The urn at Gabby Petito’s memorial was empty

Sunday 26 September 2021 18:24 , Graig Graziosi

The urn at Gabby Petito’s memorial service is actually empty, as the FBI has not relinquished her remains to her family yet.

FOX News reported that the family is unsure of when Ms Petito’s remains will be returned to them, or why the FBI deemed it necessary to hold onto the body.

Ms Petito’s death was ruled a homicide, but the cause of death and her final autopsy report are yet to be revealed.

Gabby Petito’s father tells people to learn from his daughter and leave bad relationships

Sunday 26 September 2021 17:49 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s father said people should look to his daughter and be inspired to leave bad relationships.

“If there’s a relationship you’re in that might not be the best thing for you. Leave it, now,” he said during Ms Petito’s memorial service.

He said that his daughter was the most “amazing person” he had ever met.

Gabby Petito’s father tells memorial crowd he wants them to be “inspired” by his daughter

Sunday 26 September 2021 17:32 , Graig Graziosi

During her memorial ceremony, Gabby Petito’s father, Jospeh Peitio, said he wanted attendees to look at her photos and to be inspired. He said he hopes that people will “be inspired by the way she treated people” and that they pursue their dreams “now, while you have the time.”

Her stepfather, James Schmidt, said Ms Petito taught him that “you can always make money, but you can’t make up for lost time.”

Great aunt calls Gabby Petito ‘beautiful, beautiful person'

Sunday 26 September 2021 17:09 , Bevan Hurley

Gabby Petito’s great aunt, who gave her name as Liz, said Ms Petito was a “beautiful, beautiful person” after coming out from the service. “I almost don’t even have words. It’s just so heartbreaking what happened to her and we love her and we know she’s at peace.”

Memorial service live stream

Sunday 26 September 2021 17:00 , Graig Graziosi

The Maloney Funeral Home - where friends and family of Gabby Petito are gathering to mourn the woman’s death - is live streaming the memorial service.

The funeral home will continue the live stream until 1pm. Ms Petito’s memorial service will remain open to the public until 5pm.

The livestream can be seen here.

Large flag with heart hangs above funeral home

Sunday 26 September 2021 16:47 , Bevan Hurley

A large flag with a heart and the words Blue Point hangs above the Molony’s Holbrook Funeral Home, where mourners are gathering to farewell Gabby Petito.

There’s a huge presence of fire trucks, ambulances and officers officers from the Blue Point Fire Department, where Jim Schmidt, Ms Petito’s stepfather, was the fire chief.

 (Bevan Hurley/The Independent)
(Bevan Hurley/The Independent)

Mourners attending the Gabby Petito memorial given prayer cards

Sunday 26 September 2021 16:32 , Graig Graziosi

Mourners attending Gabby Petito’s funeral are being given prayer cards with Ms Petito’s image on one side.

The opposite side of the cards contain a written poem.

The memorial service, which is being held in Blue Point, New York, is open to the public today from 12pm to 5pm.

Lines of people arrive for Gabby Petito’s funeral

Sunday 26 September 2021 16:03 , Graig Graziosi

Lines of mourners have arrived at the Maloney Funeral Home in Blue Point, New York, to participate in Gabby Petito’s memorial service.

The service is open to the public today from 12pm to 5pm.

The Gabby Petito monument in North Port, Florida grows ahead of her memorial services

Sunday 26 September 2021 15:51 , Graig Graziosi

A collection of bears, flowers and hearts honoruing Gabby Petito is growing on the lawn of North Point City Hall.

In Ms Petito’s hometown of Blue Point, New York, funeral arrangements are being prepared for a memorial service later today.

The service will be opened to the public from 12pm to 5pm.

Gabby Petito’s father details the mission of the Gabby Petito Foundation

Sunday 26 September 2021 15:04 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, detailed the mission of the foundation named after his daughter.

He explained that the foundation would go to assist the families of other missing persons.

The Independent’s Bevan Hurley has more on the foundation in the story below...

Gabby Petito’s father announces new charity to help parents of missing children

Search crews resume hunt for Brian Laundrie in the Carlton Reserve

Sunday 26 September 2021 14:44 , Graig Graziosi

North Point police search teams will continue to search for Brian Laundrie today in the Carlton Reserve. The natural area is mostly swampland infested with alligators, snakes and insects.

Mr Laundrie disappeared eight days ago. A warrant for his arrest has been issued, though he is not being sought for the murder of Ms Petito.

Police in Blue Point prepare for Gabby Petito’s funeral

Sunday 26 September 2021 14:38 , Graig Graziosi

A reporter in Blue Point, New York, shared images of police and firefighters preparing for Gabby Petito’s memorial service.

The service begins today at 12pm.

Gabby Petito Foundation will provide help to families with missing loved ones

Sunday 26 September 2021 14:22 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, announced the formation of the Gabby Petito Foundation ahead of her memorial services on Sunday.

He said the foundation would be used to provide resources and guidance for the families of missing people.

“No one should have to find their child on their own. We are creating this foundation to give resources and guidance on bringing their children home. We are looking to help people in similar situations as Gabby,” he said in a tweet.

California news anchor suspended after dispute over Petito coverage, report says

Sunday 26 September 2021 13:57 , David Taintor

Frank Somerville, an anchor for the California-based KTVU, has been suspended after a disagreement with the network about Gabby Petito coverage, the Mercury News reports.

From the newspaper’s report on Mr Somerville, who is the father of an adopted Black teenager girl:

KTVU was prepared to air a news report detailing the latest developments in the case. Somerville wanted to add a brief tagline at the end of the report that questioned the extraordinary level of media coverage devoted to the story. Sources said he wanted to point out that the U.S. media often disproportionately covers tragedies involving young White women, while largely ignoring similar cases involving women of color and Indigenous people.

Scenes from Gabby Petito vigil in Florida

Sunday 26 September 2021 13:13 , David Taintor

A sizable crowd turned out for a vigil for Gabby Petito on Saturday evening in North Port, Florida, where Brian Laundrie’s family lives. Local reporter Brian Entin captured the scene. Funeral services are set to be held on New York’s Long Island, where Ms Petito is from. Our Bevan Hurley will be reporting live from the funeral services today.

Saturday 25 September 2021 22:47 , David Taintor

Warm sunshine and clear skies are forecast for Long Island on Sunday, where a memorial service is being held for Gabby Petito.

Ms Petito’s father Joe invited members of the public to a memorial visitation at the Moloney Funeral Home in Holbrook between 12pm and 5pm.

Ms Petito’s family have asked that donations be made to the Future Gabby Petito Foundation in lieu of flowers.

The forecast is for sunny conditions all day with a high of 73F (23C).

Saturday 25 September 2021 22:33 , Bevan Hurley

Staff at a Utah motel where Brian Laundrie stayed after a domestic violent incident with girlfriend Gabby Petito on 12 August are reportedly assisting the authorities with their investigation into the missing man.

The Sun reported that Mr Laundrie spent the night at the Bowen Motel in Moab after police separated he and Ms Petito.

Staff at the $78-a-night motel said they had been co-operating with police, who are conducting a nationwide search for Mr Laundrie after he disappeared from his Florida home last week.

Bodycam footage captured Mr Laundrie telling officers he could not afford a hotel room for the night, and he was assisted by a local domestic violence charity.

Brian Laundrie pictured on police bodycam footage after they were called to a domestic violence incident in Moab, Utah, on 12 August. (AP)
Brian Laundrie pictured on police bodycam footage after they were called to a domestic violence incident in Moab, Utah, on 12 August. (AP)

Saturday 25 September 2021 21:36 , Bevan Hurley

Duane “Dog the Bounty Hunter” Chapman showed up at the North Port home of Christopher and Roberta Laundrie on Saturday afternoon.

Mr Chapman arrived in a 4WD vehicle shortly before 4:30pm and knocked on the front door of the house. No one answered the door.

He walked around the property briefly before getting back in his vehicle, declining to speak to media as he left.

Dog the Bounty Hunter declined to speak to media as he left the Laundrie family home on Saturday (Twitter.com/BrianEntin)
Dog the Bounty Hunter declined to speak to media as he left the Laundrie family home on Saturday (Twitter.com/BrianEntin)

Saturday 25 September 2021 20:31 , Bevan Hurley

Dog the Bounty Hunter has announced he is joining the search for Brian Laundrie.

The reality TV personality, whose real name is Duane Chapman, said he his wife Francie Frane are currently searching in the Carlton Reserve in Florida where Mr Laundrie told family he was going hiking last week.

“Dog and Francie have experienced extreme loss themselves,” his team said in a statement obtained by Fox News.

“Their hearts go out to Gabby’s family for what they’re going through and want to help bring justice for her death.”

Mr Chapman is calling for anyone with tips on Mr Laundrie’s whereabouts to contact him and said that “all information will be kept confidential.”

Duane 'Dog the Bounty Hunter' Chapman and wife Francie Frane have joined the hunt for Mr Laundrie (Getty Images)
Duane 'Dog the Bounty Hunter' Chapman and wife Francie Frane have joined the hunt for Mr Laundrie (Getty Images)

Saturday 25 September 2021 20:09 , Bevan Hurley

Followers of the QAnon conspiracy theory are claiming Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie are “crisis actors” and coverage of the case is a distraction from the failures of President Joe Biden.

The bizarre theory is being spread across encrypted messaging apps and social media channels including Twitter, TikTok and Facebook, where users are claiming Ms Petito’s homicide is meant to divert attention from the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan or the bogus Arizona election audit.

“The FBI is clearly coordinating with (mainstream media) to put on over the top theatrics in what is a run of the mill investigation in hopes that the public will forget about all the FBI’s scandals and be fooled in thinking that they actually fight crime,” one QAnon believer wrote on Telegram, according to the Daily Dot.

QAnon is a complex and wide-ranging conspiracy theory that asserts that Donald Trump and his allies are on a secret mission to save the world from a cabal of celebrities and Democratic politicians who are involved in various crimes against children.

Tragic incidents such as the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012 and 2018’s Parkland school shooting have also been the target of false claims that they were somehow staged.

Saturday 25 September 2021 18:17 , Bevan Hurley

A former Utah police chief is defending the actions of the Moab police officers who pulled over Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito in the town on 12 August.

A witness called 911 to say he had seen Mr Laundrie hitting and slapping Ms Petito in Moab, two weeks before she disappeared.

The officers separated the couple for the night, but did not press charges after the couple claimed Ms Petito had instigated the altercation.

On Thursday, Moab Police Department announced it was investigating how the officers handled the incident, which was captured on their body-worn cameras.

Former chief Jim Winder told KSLTV he thought the officers did an “excellent job”.

“They treated them with dignity, respect and compassion,” Mr Winder, who left the job in 2019, said.

“People ascribing particular psychological traits to Mr Laundrie and Ms Petito from a video, indicating that had one path been taken versus another… had they arrested someone, no one would have ever died.

“These are interesting topics of conversation but they’re not real,” he added.

Saturday 25 September 2021 17:02 , Bevan Hurley

Several moving trucks were spotted on the street where Brian Laundrie’s parents live in North Port, Florida, on Saturday morning.

Brian Entin, a NewsNation reporter, shot down claims that the trucks were at the Laundrie home.

Memorial service for Gabby Petito being held Sunday in Holbrook, Long Island

Saturday 25 September 2021 15:46 , Bevan Hurley

There are currently no plans to stream Gabby Petito’s memorial in Long Island tomorrow, but it will be open to the public, funeral directors say.

The memorial will be held at Moloney’s Holbrook Funeral Home at 825 Main St, Holbrook, from 12pm to 5pm.

Ms Petito grew up about five miles from the funeral home in Blue Point.

The Petito family have asked that donations be made to the Future Gabby Petito Foundation in lieu of flowers.

Florida lawyer, mom of two, puts $20,000 bounty on Brian Laundrie

Saturday 25 September 2021 14:01 , Celine Wadhera

A prominent Florida attorney and mother of two has put a $20,000 bounty on Brian Laundrie.

Tatiana Boohoff, told Fox News on Friday: “I think a missing child is every parents worst nightmare. Our hearts go out to her family and the community, and we hope that together we can get some answers and get justice for Gabby.”

Ms Boohoff, whose children are seven and 17-years-old, said that she would give $20,000 to “the first person to supply information leading directly to the exact whereabouts” of Brian.

She added that she had already received a number of tips which she forwarded on to the FBI, and said that she encouraged anyone else with leads to provide them directly to investigators.

Candlelight vigil in Blue Point, New York

Saturday 25 September 2021 13:40 , Celine Wadhera

Along the main streets of Gabby’s hometown of Blue Point, New York, friends, family and community members came together to honour the 22-year-old on Friday night.

Thousands of people lit candles and sat at the ends of their driveways, lighting candles in memory of Gabby, ahead of her memorial service on Sunday.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Gabby was like a granddaughter to me

Saturday 25 September 2021 13:10 , Celine Wadhera

Noreen Gibbons, a close friend of the Petito family, was in New York to attend Gabby’s memorial service on Sunday.

Speaking to NewsNation’s Brian Enton, she said: Gabby’s like a granddaughter to me”

“She was like a bright shining star... Now she is a star.”

“I don’t know if I want him (Brian) to be dead or if I want him to be alive to face the consequences,” she said, fighting tears. “I loved him, and I loved Gabby”.

She added that she had never seen any signs of trouble between the young couple.

Honouring Gabby Petito

Saturday 25 September 2021 12:45 , Celine Wadhera

Hundreds of candles glowed along the sidewalks and front walks of homes in Gabby Petito’s hometown of Blue Point, New York, in memory of the 22-year-old whose body was discovered on Sunday.

Search for Brian Laundrie to resume on Saturday in ‘areas of more likelihood’

Saturday 25 September 2021 12:18 , Celine Wadhera

The search for Brian is set to resume on Saturday morning, after police ended the “major” part of their search on Friday evening, a spokesperson said.

North Port police spokesperson Josh Taylor announced that Saturday and Sunday’s investigative efforts in the Carlton Reserve would focus on “areas of more likelihood”.

Mr Taylor added that local law enforcement would not be providing regular updates on the search over the weekend, unless something of note was discovered.

Authorities have not said why they are convinced that Mr Laundrie may still be somewhere inside the more than 24,000-acre nature preserve more than a week after he told family members he was headed there to hike alone.

The Carlton Reserve has more than 80 miles of hiking trails but is dominated by swampy water.

Photos of Gabby left in front of Laundrie family home

Saturday 25 September 2021 11:33 , Celine Wadhera

Reporting from outside the Laundrie family home in North Port, Florida, Brian Entin, Correspondent for News Nation Now reported that someone had been leaving photos of Gabby around the front yard.

“There are these memorials popping up all over the place. There are posters that appeared outside the Laundrie family home.”

Mr Entin pointed to pictures of Gabby had been attached to palm trees close to the Laundrie’s front door, as well as a number of laminated photos of her closer to the sidewalk.

One of the photos also contained the text “I was here once”.

“This is obviously a message someone is trying to send the family,” he said.

Mr Entin added that the Laundrie family had not come out of the house to see or remove the pictures on Friday.

Gabby Petito timeline

Saturday 25 September 2021 10:48 , Celine Wadhera

2 July – Gabby and fiancé Brian Laundrie leave New York for road trip.

12 August – The couple is seen arguing in Moab City, Utah. Concerned bystanders call the police, who intervene, capturing the altercation on video on the officers’ body camera. One officer describes the incident as a “mental health crisis”.

24 August – Gabby was spotted checking out of a hotel in Salt Lake City, Utah, with Brian.

25 August – Gabby has a video call with her mother – last known citing of the 22-year-old.

26-27 August – Last text messages sent from Gabby’s phone.

1 September – Brian returns to North Port, Florida, where the couple lived, without Gabby.

11 September – Gabby’s family launch missing person’s investigation

14 September – Police declare Brian a “person of interest” in the case.

17 September – Brian’s family call investigators to their home, admit Brian has been missing since 14 September.

19 September – FBI announce that a body has been discovered in Wyoming, believed to be Gabby.

20 September – FBI search the Laundrie home, now declared a crime scene.

21 September – Petito family attorney confirms that the body found in Wyoming is Gabby. FBI confirm her death to be a homicide.

23 September – FBI issue federal arrest warrant for Brian Laundrie, related to “activities following the death of Gabby”

24 September – People gather to honour Gabby in her hometown, Blue Point, New York

A timeline of the death of Gabby Petito

Police say they are doing ‘due diligence’ in Florida search

Saturday 25 September 2021 03:59 , Graeme Massie

“We’re not wasting our time out here, we are doing our due diligence,” Commander Joe Fussell with North Port Police told Fox4.

Thousands of candles lit in Gabby Petito’s hometown

Saturday 25 September 2021 03:01 , Graeme Massie

It was carried out across Blue Point, Long Island, as the community gets ready for her memorial service on Sunday.

Candles lit on Friday night to remember Gabby Petito

Saturday 25 September 2021 02:01 , Graeme Massie

People took to social media to post pictures of candles and lanterns lit for Gabby Petito across the country.

Police say they received bogus call of gun shots fired near Laundrie home

Saturday 25 September 2021 00:29 , Graeme Massie

North Port Police say they responded after the Friday evening call, which came from an unknown number, but found no evidence of any shots being fired.

Police arrive at Laundrie family home in Florida

Friday 24 September 2021 23:58 , Graeme Massie

A number of patrol cars arrived at the Laundrie home in North Port, Florida, but quickly drove off again, according to news stations.

The incident led to speculation that the police had received a bogus call to the home.

Lawyer says Brian Laundrie left home without phone or wallet

Friday 24 September 2021 23:35 , Graeme Massie

The Laundrie family attorney, Steven Bertolino, told ABC7 Sarasota that Brian left the home on Tuesday 14 September, and that his parents were concerned her was going to hurt himself.

Protest held at Brian Laundrie’s parents’ house

Friday 24 September 2021 23:02 , Graeme Massie

A woman stopped at the Laundrie family’s North Port home on Friday and placed pictures of Gabby Petito with the phrase “I was here once” on the lawn.

The woman posted a total of five pictures, according to Fox News.

North Port police call off Brian Laundrie search for Friday

Friday 24 September 2021 22:33 , Graeme Massie

North Port Police PIO Josh Taylor said that some members of the search will remain at Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County, and that officers “ will be back out throughout the weekend. Focusing on areas of more likelihood across the Reserve.”

The department also addressed the cost of the so-far unsuccessful search for Mr Laundrie at the 25,000 acre reserve.

“We do not have that tallied up. We are not paying other agencies, it’s mutual aid. From our personnel standpoint, I would say we are working this case instead of other things. That has an impact of course. There will be some overtime mixed in there.

“Cost of fuel and vehicle maintenance too. Almost every meal we’ve had at the PD has been made by family or donated. Every meal for those working out in the field has been donated by generous citizens and businesses.”

And he said he understood “the need for answers” in the high-profile case.

“We, along with our many law enforcement partners are looking to bring those answers to you. At the right time, we will be able to share everything. “

 (North Port Police Department/ZUMA Press Wire Service/Shutterstock)
(North Port Police Department/ZUMA Press Wire Service/Shutterstock)

Timeline of events in the Gabby Petito situation

Friday 24 September 2021 21:32 , Graig Graziosi

Keep up to date with the latest developments in the disappearance and death of Gabby Petito as well as the search for Brian Laundrie.

The Independent has compiled a full timeline of key events in the ongoing story.

A timeline of the death of Gabby Petito

North Port police say they are not “wasting their time” searching for Brian Laundrie in the Carlton Reserve

Friday 24 September 2021 21:00 , Graig Graziosi

The North Port police offered a video update on their efforts in the Carlton Reserve, saying they are “not wasting their time” searching for Brian Laundrie in the swamp.

An officer says they are “working as hard to find him now as we did on day one.”

As Gabby Petito memorials begin in Utah, others with missing loved ones seek for similar attention

Friday 24 September 2021 20:45 , Graig Graziosi

Memorials in Utah, Florida and New York remembering Gabby Petito have begun, with Ms Petito’s family asking for donations to help establish a foundation in the woman’s name.

However, as attention is focused on Ms Petito’s disappearance and death, the families of missing people are pleading for the same level of attention from the public and press that Ms Petito was given.

The Independent’s Enrique Limón has more on the story below...

Gabby Petito developments inspire vigil and spark a conversation around MMIW in Utah

Long Islanders come together in remembrance of Gabby Petito

Friday 24 September 2021 20:26 , Graig Graziosi

Long Islanders are taking part in small remembrances of Gabby Petito in the wake of her death.

According to News12, some neighbors in Long Island - where Ms Petito grew up - are tying teal ribbons on trees, street signs and poles in their neighborhoods.

They’ve also been participating in the “Shine a Light for Gabby” fundraiser, in which they trade $20 donations for lights they can place outside their homes. Proceeds from the fundraiser will go to assist the Petito and Schmidt families.

Woman posts photos of Gabby Petito on Laundrie’s front lawn

Friday 24 September 2021 20:07 , Graig Graziosi

A woman has posted five flyers on the front lawn of the Laundrie’s home in North Port, Florida.

The flyers include photos of Gabby Petito with the words “I was here once” printed on them.

Gabby Petito’s family is creating bracelets and giving them out to honor her daughter

Friday 24 September 2021 19:48 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s family members are making bracelets and passing them out in remembrance of the woman.

“It represents Gabby. Remember to celebrate and enjoy life and not be sad,” Ms Petito’s mother Nicole Schmidt told WFLA.

The bracelets are currently being distributed to those closest to the family, but Ms Petito’s mother said she’d love “the whole world” to wear them.

North Port police provide video update on today’s search for Brian Laundrie

Friday 24 September 2021 19:30 , Graig Graziosi

North Port police provided a video update on today’s search for Brian Laundrie at the Carlton Reserve.

An officer in the video revealed that thus far there have been no developments in the search.

“Nothing has been found so far today,” North Port PIO Josh Taylor said. “Details for Friday are TBD. We will send out a release when efforts have been halted for the day and possible details moving forward.”

Gabby Petito’s family to establish foundation in her name

Friday 24 September 2021 19:18 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s family plans to begin a foundation in her name.

Ms Petito’s father asked for donations to begin the foundation in lieu of flowers for her memorial service on Sunday.

The Independent’s Bevan Hurley has more below...

Family set up foundation in honour of Gabby Petito

Gabby Petito’s uncle calls for neighbors to light candles on their driveways in memory of neice

Friday 24 September 2021 19:05 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s uncle posted a request on Instagram for neighbors to light candles at the end of their driveways in memory of his niece.

He asked for the candle lighting to occur at 7pm on Friday night.

Gabby Petito’s uncle Steve Petito asks neighbors to light candles in memory of Ms Petito. (screengrab)
Gabby Petito’s uncle Steve Petito asks neighbors to light candles in memory of Ms Petito. (screengrab)

Gabby Petito’s father asks for donations to establish Gabby Petito Foundation

Friday 24 September 2021 18:47 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s father has asked people to donate money instead of sending flowers to her memorial service on Sunday.

He said the money will be used to establish a foundation named after his father.

Police focusing search on part of Carlton Reserve closest to North Port

Friday 24 September 2021 18:30 , Graig Graziosi

North Port police are reportedly focusing their search for Brian Laundrie in the Carlton Reserve on a portion of the swamp closest to North Port.

Previous search attempts were focused on a part of the park closest to Venice.

National security expert expects Brian Laundrie’s parents to be summoned before a grand jury “momentarily"

Friday 24 September 2021 18:10 , Graig Graziosi

An ex-FBI national security expert told CNBC that he expects Brian Laundrie’s parents to be summoned before grand jury “momentarily.”

“I would expect that to happen momentarily, see them in front of a grand jury, and then if they are not going to cooperate, they can get charged with contempt or obstruction,” Frank Figliuzzi said. “There is no parental-child privilege, and I actually thought, by now, we would see them summoned to the grand jury. We now have an indictment, it’s a federal case.”

Yesterday, Mr Laundrie’s parents drove to Orlando after returning their son’s silver Mustang from the North Port police, who had towed the vehicle. The Laundrie’s attorney said they traveled there on business. Reporters at the scene noted that unmarked vehicles, presumably belonging to law enforcement, tailed the couple to Orlando and back.

Survival expert doesn’t think Brian Laundrie could survive this long in the Carlton Reserve

Friday 24 September 2021 17:34 , Graig Graziosi

NBC News spoke with a survival expert who told them he did not believe Brian Laundrie could survive for this long in the harsh Carlton Reserve.

“The chances of him surviving much longer than this 6 or 7 days without expiring are pretty slim,” the expert said.

Gabby Petito’s father confirms memorial event on Sunday

Friday 24 September 2021 16:57 , Graig Graziosi

Gabby Petito’s father took to Instagram to confirm the memorial event this Sunday for his daughter.

The memorial will take place between 12 and 5pm in Holbrook, New York.

Muddy conditions in Carlton Reserve this morning

Friday 24 September 2021 16:29 , Graig Graziosi

The North Port police showed the muddy terrain inside the Carlton Reserve, where they’re searching for Brian Laundrie.

Mr Laundrie has been missing for seven days. Police searching the swampy natural preserve have used helicopters, infrared cameras, dive teams, police dogs, drones and swamp buggies in their search for Mr Laundrie.

Family of missing Black man Jelani Day points out disparity in interest

Friday 24 September 2021 16:11 , Graig Graziosi

The mother of Jelani Day has been searching for her son for a month.

After interest in Gabby Petito’s disappearance exploded nationwide, Ms Day grew frustrated and pointed out the disparity in treatment between her son and Ms Petito’s situations.

Mr Day’s body was recovered a day after his family highlighted the unequal treatment.

The Independent’s Stuti Mishra has more below...

Body of missing student identified a day after mother protested less attention

Brian Laundrie reportedly left home without his wallet or phone

Friday 24 September 2021 15:28 , Graig Graziosi

Brian Laundrie reportedly left his home without his cell phone or his wallet, according to a source close to the Laundrie family.

Police have been searching for Mr Laundrie for a week, with still no leads.

The Independent’s Bevan Hurley has more on the story below...

Brian Laundrie left home without cellphone and wallet, family friend says

Memorial service set for Gabby Petito on Sunday

Friday 24 September 2021 14:55 , Graig Graziosi

The family of Gabby Petito will hold a memorial service in New York on Sunday.

The service will be held from 12-5pm and will be open to the public. The memorial will be hosted at Moloney’s Holbrook Funeral Home in Holbrook, New York.

The Independent’s Bevan Hurley has more below...

Public invited to attend memorial for Gabby Petito at funeral home

The hunt for Brian Laundrie at the Carlton Reserve continues

Friday 24 September 2021 14:48 , Graig Graziosi

Police in North Port are searching the Carlton Reserve again today for any trace of Brian Laundrie.

The police have used helicopters, dive teams, infrared cameras, swamp buggies, drones and police dogs in their attempts to locate Mr Laundrie, but have thus far turned up nothing.

Police used infrared cameras in overnight search for Brian Laundrie

Friday 24 September 2021 14:33 , Graig Graziosi

Police utilised infrared cameras in their ongoing search for Brian Laundrie overnight Thursday.

The cameras were primarily used by officers circling the Carlton Reserve in helicopters.

Gabby Petito: A timeline of the social media star’s death

Friday 24 September 2021 13:50 , Eleanor Sly

Gabby Petito, a 22-year-old YouTuber and Instagram star, went missing in late August, having embarked on a cross-country road trip with her fiancé Brian Laundrie, 23, that she was documenting on social media.

The couple grew up in Blue Point on Long Island in New York but lived together in North Port, Florida, setting out on a dream road trip from the Big Apple on 2 July in Ms Petito’s Ford Transit van and hoping to reach a friend’s house in Portland, Oregon, by Halloween.

However, Ms Petito’s family have not heard from their daughter since receiving text messages towards the end of last month that they have suggested may not have been written by her.

Read more:

A timeline of the death of Gabby Petito

Where could Laundrie be?

Friday 24 September 2021 13:17 , Eleanor Sly

In the ten days since Brian Laundrie vanished, there has been growing speculation over where he might be.

Police and FBI have been searching the Carlton Reserve in Florida, near to Mr Laundrie’s parents’ home, but with no trace of him reported thus far, some are suggesting that he could have fled.

“I don’t think he killed himself,” said Pat Diaz, a retired Miami-Dade homicide detective, reported Fox News. He added: “I think he’s just going to disappear.”

Dan Riemer, who is a West Palm-based private investigator, agreed.

“That search in the swamp is leading everyone to believe Brian is in the swamp, and no civilians are paying attention to who is around them,” Mr Riemer said.

“[The] focus needs to be on people being aware, [and] someone will see something, just like the campers who saw the van.”

There has been speculation that Mr Laundrie could have fled as far away as Mexico and some internet sleuths think he may be in Puerto Rico.

Meanwhile, Mr Riemer said there’s a possibility that Mr Laundrie could have made it to South Florida. If this is the case, the private investigator suggested that he could try to hide in plain sight.

“They send their kids down here for rehab, then the kids leave rehab, and they hire me to find them,” he told Fox News on Thursday. “It’s amazing how they survive. No credit card, no physical signs of income, and they just make do.”

Laundrie and Petito’s relationship had ‘very high highs and very low lows’ say school friends

Friday 24 September 2021 12:28 , Eleanor Sly

School friends of Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito said that the pair experienced “highs and lows” during their relationship, suggesting that there was “always some drama.”

Ms Petito and Mr Laundrie met whilst at high school in New York but broke up in 2016, after Mr Laundrie graduated.

They restarted their relationship just one year later when Ms Petito finished school, with friends saying that although the couple fell in and out of love, they didn’t see anything “concerning” between them.

Alyssa Chen told People magazine: “They had very high highs and very low lows. But she always said he was a good boyfriend.”

Meanwhile another school friend, Ben Matula said: “One minute, they’d be all over each other, the next minute he’d be like ‘We’re fighting. They always had some drama.”

Gabby Petito death: Arrest warrant for bank fraud issued for missing Brian Laundrie

Friday 24 September 2021 11:53 , Eleanor Sly

A federal court has issued an arrest warrant for Brian Laundrie, the missing fiancé of Gabby Petito, the FBI has announced.

According to the bureau’s Denver, Colorado division, the warrant was issued on Wednesday.

“On September 22, 2021, the U.S. District Court of Wyoming issued a federal arrest warrant for Brian Christopher Laundrie pursuant to a Federal Grand Jury indictment related to Mr Laundrie’s activities following the death of Gabrielle Petito,” FBI Denver said in a tweet.

Read more here:

Arrest warrant for bank fraud issued for Gabby Petito’s missing boyfiend

Laundrie’s warrant not for Petito’s death, says attorney

Friday 24 September 2021 11:09 , Eleanor Sly

An attorney for Brian Laundrie’s family was keen to emphasise that the arrest warrant for Mr Laundrie is not for Gabby Petito’s death, but is related to activities that took place afterwards.

The US District Court of Wyoming issued an arrest warrant for Mr Laundrie, said the FBI’s Denver field office, after he was indicted by a grand jury for “use of unauthorised devices,” following Ms Petito’s death.

According to the indictment, Mr Laundrie illegally used a debit card and PIN number for charges totaling more than $1,000 (£730). The accounts which he used did not belong to him, while the transactions took place between the dates of 30 August and 1 September.

“It is my understanding that the arrest warrant for Brian Laundrie is related to activities occurring after the death of Gabby Petito and not related to her actual demise,” Steve Bertolino, an attorney for Mr Laundrie’s family said in a statement.

“The FBI is focusing on locating Brian and when that occurs the specifics of the charges covered under the indictment will be addressed in the proper forum.”

Laundrie could have been eaten in Carlton Reserve

Friday 24 September 2021 10:26 , Eleanor Sly

Brian Laundrie may have been eaten by alligators in Carlton Reserve, says a survival expert.

Speaking to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune Mark Burrow said that it was possible that Mr Laundrie could have been eaten by an alligator if he had become injured or was particularly exhausted.

Mr Burrow told the Sarasota Herald-Tribune: “They like to put a carcass under a log, and let it get all rotten.

“Then the gator would eat you slowly.”

Mr Burrow also suggested that coyotes or bobcats could pray on Mr Laundrie.

He added: “If he’s down there in the Carlton Reserve, he’s living in hell.

“People have been making a big deal of the alligators and the snakes, but it’s dehydration that’s the real danger.”

Former co-worker says Petito and Laundrie were ‘couple goals’

Friday 24 September 2021 09:34 , Eleanor Sly

A former co-worker of Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie said that she “never would expect this” from either of the pair and suggested that they were “couple goals.”

Nicole Kalanich, who worked at a local Publix Supermarket with the couple, told NBC 6: “The only thing I could say is they were ‘couple goals,

“They were very happy, never would expect this from Brian or Gabby.”

Ms Petito worked in the pharmacy of Publix Supermarket to save up for her travels, while Mr Laundrie worked in the grocery department.

“They were saving up for this trip, I guess because he got her in to work at Publix,” Ms Kalanich said.

She added: “She [Ms Petito] was very happy never sad honestly. She always had energy to travel. She was very excited for this trip.”

What is ‘Missing White Woman Syndrome’?

Friday 24 September 2021 08:57 , Eleanor Sly

In the wake of Gabby Petito’s homicide, a number of experts have said that America is facing so-called Missing White Women Syndrome,” defined by the heavier attention that white women and girls receive from the media, should they go missing, compared to anyone outside this demographic.

This is according to a study published by the Northwestern University School of Law in 2016. It highlights how black people are less likely to gain attention from the media than other groups, should they go missing. The study also noted that when these groups do make the news, they tend to receive a lower intensity of coverage.

According to 2020 FBI data, black people make up 35 per cent of missing persons reports, but only account for 13 per cent of the US population. Meanwhile, white people constitute 54 per cent of those reported missing and 76 per cent of the US population.

Second woman reveals she picked up hitchhiking Brian Laundrie

Friday 24 September 2021 08:39 , Eleanor Sly

Amid the ongoing manhunt for Brian Laundrie, a second woman has come forward to say that she gave him a ride while he was hitchhiking in Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park on 29 August.

His fiancé, YouTuber Gabby Petito, was last seen in the region on 27 August at a Tex-Mex restaurant, where they allegedly had an argument.

Norma Jean Jalovec, a resident of Florida, said that she realised that she had picked up Mr Laundrie and dropped him off at the Spread Creek dispersed camping area after seeing a TikTok video.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar reports:

Second woman reveals she picked up hitchhiking Brian Laundrie

Gabby Petito’s stepfather leaves stone cross at site where she was found

Friday 24 September 2021 08:25 , Eleanor Sly

Gabby Petito’s stepfather James Schmidt, who is married to Ms Petito’s mother, left a stone cross in her memorial in Spread Creek Dispersed Camping Area in the Bridger-Teton National Forest.

Body of missing student identified a day after his mother complained about Gabby Petito attention

Friday 24 September 2021 07:31 , Eleanor Sly

The body of a missing Illinois Black student has been recovered by the police after a month-long disappearance and the family’s accusation that officials were not taking his case as seriously as Gabby Petito’s.

Jelani Day, 25, a first semester graduate student from Illinois State University was missing since 24 August after last being spotted at ISU and at a store in Bloomington.

His body was found floating in the Illinois river on 4 September about a mile from where the car was found, however, the police took almost three weeks in identifying him, WGLT News reported.

Stuti Mishra has more:

Body of missing student identified a day after mother protested less attention

Deb Haaland says Gabby Petito case is a reminder of missing Native American women and girls

Friday 24 September 2021 07:04 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Deb Haaland, the first Native American cabinet secretary, has said that the Gabby Petito case should be a reminder of “hundreds of Native American girls and women who are missing or murdered in the United States”.

Ms Haaland empathised with the Petito family and said that her heart goes out to them.

She however added that she also grieves for “so many Indigenous women″ whose families have endured similar heartache “for the last 500 years”.

The Gabby Petito disappearance and the subsequent categorisation of the case as homicide have generated a huge reaction online even as some critics described the media coverage as an example of “missing white woman syndrome”.

A report prepared by the state of Wyoming - where Petito’s body was found - showed that “at least 710 Native Americans were reported missing between 2011 and late 2020” in the state. It found that between 2010 and 2019, the homicide rate per 100,000 for Indigenous people was 26.8 — eight times higher than the homicide rate for white people.

‘In Pursuit with John Walsh’ host’s son comments on ‘mistakes’ made in Petito case

Friday 24 September 2021 06:35 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The TV personality Callahan Walsh — co-host of ‘In Pursuit with John Walsh’ — believes that the law enforcement made “mistakes” in the Gabby Petito homicide case.

Walsh, who co-hosts the crime show with his father John Walsh, said that he believes Petito was in an abusive relationship with boyfriend Brian Laundrie. He pointed out that the police should have handled things “differently” when they responded to two emergency calls about the couple fighting.

He said: “When law enforcement showed up, they didn’t have that information of the caller saying they had seen Brian assaulting Gabby. Mistakes were absolutely made. Were those mistakes made intentionally? No. Law enforcement works off of — especially law enforcement officers out in the field — [they’re] working on the information that they get. When the police show up, it’s a scary situation. People are nervous.”

He added: “There were multiple accounts from multiple different witnesses that there was some sort of abuse going on between them. Who the aggressor was – that line blurs sometimes in domestic disputes.”

Walsh also said that he is convinced that 23-year-old Mr Laundrie is responsible for Petito’s death.

A federal arrest warrant for Mr Laundrie was issued by the FBI on Thursday.

Academic says Gabby Petito homicide coverage threatens to turn the case into ‘entertainment’

Friday 24 September 2021 06:04 , Maroosha Muzaffar

A California State University academic has said that the Gabby Petito homicide coverage threatens to turn the case into “entertainment.”

Danielle Slakoff, who specialises in criminal justice and the media was quoted in the New York Times as saying that there were a number of reasons people were interested in the 22-year-old YouTuber’s case. She said that because Petito documented the road trip on her social media, “providing glimpses of her life,” people wanted to feel that they were “part of the story” by helping to solve her disappearance.

Prof Slakoff pointed out that research and her own work has shown that “white missing women and girls do receive more initial coverage and they do receive more repeated coverage.”

She said that white women in the media were usually portrayed as “good people” while women of colour were often depicted as risk-takers or “somehow complicit in their own disappearances.”

Emphasising the media coverage, she pointed out: “I don’t think we can discount the profit motive and the fact that, historically, these types of stories have gotten tons of engagement, viewers and clicks. So I do think it could be argued that it’s kind of this vicious cycle.”

Brian Laundrie left home without cellphone and wallet, source says

Friday 24 September 2021 05:35 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Brian Laundrie left his parents’ home in North Port, Florida, without his mobile phone or wallet, an anonymous close friend of the Laundrie family has told CNN.

A federal arrest warrant has been issued for Mr Laundrie who was reported missing by his parents last Tuesday.

The source also revealed to CNN’s Chris Cuomo that Mr Laundrie’s parents feared that he might hurt himself.

Gabby Petito’s remains were found on Sunday in Bridger-Teton National Forest in Wyoming and the FBI said that she was a victim of homicide.

Meanwhile, Brian Laundrie’s parents returned from a trip to Orlando on Thursday. Reports said that they were there to meet their lawyer.

QAnon channels calling Gabby Petito homicide a ‘false flag’

Friday 24 September 2021 05:10 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Several QAnon channels are claiming that the attention given to the Gabby Petito case is a “false flag” operation to distract from president Joe Biden’s “failures”.

Some conspiracy theorists have come up with their own elaborate theories about the 22-year-old’s disappearance, with suggestions that Petito never even existed, or was played by an actor.

Earlier this week, Petito was declared a victim of a homicide and the FBI has issued an arrest warrant for her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie.

The search for Mr Laundrie in Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County was halted on Thursday and police said they’ll resume the search on Friday.

Second woman says she gave Brian Laundrie a ride

Friday 24 September 2021 04:38 , Maroosha Muzaffar

A second woman has come up with information about Brian Laundrie, claiming that she gave him a ride on 29 August in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming.

Norma Jean Jalovec is the second woman — after Miranda Baker — to give “missing” Brian Laundrie a ride during his hitchhiking, just two days after Gabby Petito was last seen.

Ms Jalovec told Fox News that she dropped him off around 6.30 or 6.40 pm local time at the Spread Creek dispersed camping area, where Petito’s remains were discovered weeks later.

Meanwhile, an arrest warrant was also issued for Mr Laundrie and a North Port law firm is offering a $20,000 reward for anyone with information that could help find him.

Casey Anthony’s lawyer says he is not representing Brian Laundrie or family

Friday 24 September 2021 04:01 , Graeme Massie

Mr Laundrie’s parents drove to Orlando on Thursday, and there had been speculation it was to meet with Jose Baez.

But Mr Baez told TMZ.com that he had not been retained by the family, saying he had not spoken to any member of the Laundrie family.

“Therefore, I do not represent him or anyone else related to the case” he told the outlet.

Weekend Florida memorial for Gabby Petito planned

Friday 24 September 2021 03:15 , Graeme Massie

The memorial on Saturday in North Port, Florida, will feature the lighting of candles and the release fo a single butterfly.

Residents of the town will gather in front of the City Hall near a tree that has become a spot for people to remember her.

“I just want the family to know our community loved Gabby, even if we didn’t all know her,” event organiser Lisa Correll told The Daily Sun.

The remembrance is called “Butterfly Wings to Heaven for Gabby,” and will take place one day after another planned ceremony honoring Ms Petito on her native Long Island, New York.

Lawyer explains $20,000 reward for finding Brian Laundrie

Friday 24 September 2021 02:45 , Graeme Massie

Tatiana Boohoff of Tampa Bay’s Boohoff Law told WFLA why they had offered the cash.

North Port Police react to Brian Laundrie arrest warrant

Friday 24 September 2021 01:45 , Graeme Massie

“Our job right now is to continue the search in Carlton. That’s what we’ll do,” said North Port Police PIO Josh Taylor.

 (AP)
(AP)

A timeline of Gabby Petito's disappearance

Friday 24 September 2021 00:45 , Graeme Massie

Gabby Petito, a 22-year-old YouTuber and Instagram star, went missing in late August, having embarked on a cross-country road trip with her fiancé Brian Laundrie, 23, that she was documenting on social media.

Now she is dead and law enforcement are searching for Mr Laundrie as a federal arrest warrant has been issued for him.

Here’s a timeline of everything we know about Gabby Petito’s death so far.

A timeline of the death of Gabby Petito

Click here to read the full blog on The Independent's website

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