Gabby Petito's Remains Confirmed, Initial Determination on Cause of Death Is Homicide
By Paige Gawley
Gabby Petito's remains have been found. The FBI announced on Tuesdaythat the remains that they'd previously said were consistent with Petito's description, were in fact that of the 22-year-old.
"Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue confirmed the remains are those of Gabrielle Venora Petito, date of birth March 19, 1999," read a tweet by FBI Denver. "Coroner Blue’s initial determination for the manner of death is homicide. The cause of death remains pending final autopsy results."
The FBI also mentioned Petito's fiancé, Brian Laundrie, with whom she was on a cross country trip at the time of her disappearance.
"Mr. Brian Laundrie has been named a person of interest. Anyone with information concerning Mr. Laundrie's role in this matter or his current whereabouts should contact the FBI," they said.
In a statement to multiple outlets, Laundrie's family lawyer, Steven Bertolino, said, "May Gabby rest in peace.
Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue confirmed the remains are those of Gabrielle Venora Petito, date of birth March 19, 1999. Coroner Blue’s initial determination for the manner of death is homicide. The cause of death remains pending final autopsy results. pic.twitter.com/JoHenMZ9UU
On Sept. 1, Laundrie returned to Florida, where he and Petito had been living, without her. Petito's family reported her missing on Sept. 11, after they were unable to contact her.
CBS News previously reported that Laundrie had been named a person of interest in the Petito case, but authorities weren't able to speak with him. On Sept. 17, an attorney for Laundrie's family contacted the FBI and said they had not seen him since Sept. 14.
The body consistent with Petito's description was found on Sunday, Sept. 19 near Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. One day later, the FBI announced that they were "executing a court-authorized search warrant" on Laundrie's home.
Also on Sept. 20, CBS News obtained audio in which a 911 caller reported a domestic dispute allegedly between Petito and Laundrie before her disappearance. According to the audio, the caller alleged that the man "was slapping the girl."
The couple was pulled over by police in Moab, Utah, on Aug. 12, shortly after the 911 call. Their encounter with police was captured on body camera footage that has since been released to the public. In the footage, Petito admitted to striking Laundrie, but did not accuse him of being violent toward her.