A BODY found in the area of Grand Teton Park in Wyoming is believed to be that of missing woman Gabby Petito.
In a press statement, the FBI announced Sunday that the body found in Grand Teton National Park has forensic identifiers consistent with that of missing 22-year-old Gabby Petito.
An FBI spokesperson said the bureau’s staff will hold Gabby’s family in their thoughts as they “mourn the loss” of their daughter.
“Today, the search revealed human remains consistent with the description of Gabrielle ‘Gabby’ Petito,” the FBI statement said.
“Full forensic identification has not been completed and we do not yet know the cause of death. We appreciate your patience as we work through this process.”
The news comes after a business owner in the area where the body was found claimed Petito and Laundrie spent nearly 20 minutes at her store in Idaho on either August 25 or 26.
“They told me they were traveling from Florida. They had just been to Teton Park and they said they were interested in going to Yellowstone and I told them they could go to the west entrance,” the owner of Rustic Row in Victor told EastIdahoNews.com.
“They seemed happy and when they left, she hollered back from the door that they were engaged and then I said congratulations,” she added.
The store owner told the local news outlet that she has reported this information to police.
If true, this encounter would have occurred after Petito’s last confirmed sighting at the Fairfield Inn and Suites in Salt Lake City, Utah, on August 24.
Petito, 22, has been missing for two weeks after going on a cross-country road trip with her fiancé.
While Petito never returned home, her fiancé did and has since made headlines after he reportedly hired an attorney and refused to work with the police.
Read our Gabby Petito live blog for the latest news and updates…
LAUNDRIE RETURNED HOME FROM TRIP ALONE
After months on the road together, Brian Laundrie is believed to have driven home alone in Gabby Petito’s white Ford Transit van to Florida on September 1.
Petito was not reported missing until September 11, weeks after her family had last heard from her.
She was last seen on August 24 in Salt Lake City, Utah, before traveling to at Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on August 25, where she made a final call to her family before a planned trip to Yellowstone National Park.
A later message from Petito’s phone to her family said she had poor signal in Yeosemtie, California – although it’s not clear whether she sent the message or not.
WHEN DID LAUNDRIE GO MISSING?
Brian Laundrie was reported missing on Friday, nearly a week after the investigation into Gabby Petito’s disappearance was launched.
“The attorney for the Laundrie family called FBI investigators Friday night, indicating the family would like to talk about the disappearance of their son. The family now claims that they have not seen Brian since Tuesday of this week,” Josh Taylor, a public information officer for the North Port Police, said.
NORTH PORT POLICE RELEASE STATEMENT ON TWITTER
The North Port Police Department, the hometown police force for both Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie, released a statement on Twitter.
“Saddened and heartbroken to learn that Gabby has been found deceased. Our focus from the start, along with the FBI, and national partners, has been to bring her home,” the statement reads.
“We will continue to work with the FBI in the search for more answers,” the tweet concludes.
CORONER’S VAN SEEN LEAVING GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK
Fox News reports that a coroner’s van was seen leaving the national park where remains believed to be Gabby Petito’s were found.
Teton County Coroner Brent Blue arrived on the scene around an hour before the FBI released a statement about the remains.
No cause of death has been announced and the investigation is still ongoing.
HAS BRIAN LAUNDRIE MADE A STATEMENT ABOUT THE FBI’S ANNOUNCEMENT?
Brian Laundrie’s location is still unknown.
According to NewsNationNow reporter Brian Entin on Twitter, the Laundries released a statement through their family attorney.
“The news about Gabby Petito is heartbreaking,” the statement reads. “The Laundrie family prays for Gabby and her family.”
IS THE FBI STILL LOOKING FOR TIPS?
The FBI is still investigating Gabby Petito’s disappearance and accepting information from the public.
“We continue to seek information from anyone who utilized the Spread Creek Dispersed Camping Area between the dates of August 27-30, 2021 and who may have had contact with Gabby or her boyfriend, or who may have seen their vehicle,” said the agency in a statement.
Information can be shared tips.fbi.gov, and photos relevant to the case can be uploaded at fbi.gov/petito.
Tips can also be shared by calling 1-800-CALL-FBI.
‘IT’S LIKE DROWNING’
Gabby Petito’s father said his daughter’s disappearance is like “drowning with your hands tied behind you.”
“You can’t describe it. There’s nothing you can do. You can’t control anything,” Joe Petito said.
HAS A CAUSE OF DEATH BEEN ANNOUNCED?
“Today, the search revealed human remains consistent with the description of Gabrielle ‘Gabby’ Petito,” the FBI said in a press release.
“Full forensic identification has not been completed and we do not yet know the cause of death.”
WHAT DID GABBY’S FAMILY SAY ABOUT THE FBI’S ANNOUNCEMENT?
On Sunday, Joseph Petito shared a photo of his daughter Gabby Petito to Instagram after the FBI announced a body found in Grend Teton National Park is believed to be the 22-year-old.
The photo features Gabby in front of a mural of angel wings, and the caption “she touched the world” with a broken heart emoji.
BODY FOUND IN WYOMING IS BELIEVED TO BE GABBY PETITO, SAYS FBI
In a statement to the press on Sunday, the FBI confirmed that the body found in Grand Teton National Park is believed to be that of missing Gabby Petito.
The FBI spokesperson indicated that while the remains have not been positively confirmed as Gabby’s, forensic indicators are consistent with her description.
WHEN WAS GABBY LAST SEEN?
Petito was last seen on August 24, 2021, checking out of a hotel with Laundrie in Salt Lake City, Utah.
While Petito’s mother, Nicole Schmidt, revealed that she heard from her daughter on August 27 and 30, she told Fox News she is not sure if it was actually her as only text messages were exchanged.
“It was just a text. I did not verbally speak to her,” she told the media outlet.
“I can’t say much, but she’s no longer with the van. I don’t want to say anything more than that but for people looking for her, I want them to look for her now, not look for that van anymore.”
WHERE HAVE SEARCHES BEEN CONDUCTED?
Searches have been conducted in and around Grand Teton National Park, where Gabby Petito was believed to have visited with Brian Laundrie. A search has also been conducted at the Mabry Carlton Reserve in Florida, where Brian Laundrie was believed to be over the weekend.
On Sunday, the North Port Police Department tweeted, “Our search of the Carlton has concluded for the evening. Nothing to report.”
WHAT HAS THE FBI SAID ABOUT THE CASE?
The Denver FBI will hold a press conference on Sunday, September 19 about the Gabby Petito case.
It is not known if the update will focus on the body found in the national park.
“#UPDATE: #FBIDenver, @NatlParkService & our law enforcement partners will provide an update in the investigation into Gabrielle “Gabby” Petito’s disappearance at 4:00 PM MDT at the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center in Grand Teton National Park,” the FBI Denver tweeted.
HAVE AUTHORITIES CONFIRMED THE IDENTITY OF THE BODY FOUND SUNDAY?
There has been no confirmation of identity for the remains found on Sunday.
Fox News Digital was able to confirm that Teton County Coroner Brent Blue arrived in the Bridger-Teton National Forest, shortly before search dog units searching in the area left the scene.
GABBY’S FAMILY SHARES VIDEO OF VAN
Gabby Petito’s family shared footage that they believed showed the van she and Brian Laundrie were traveling in before she vanished.
The Petito family said the footage was captured on August 27, days after the last time Petito was confirmed seen.
The family said the footage is an important piece of the puzzle, and the FBI has it.
WHAT WERE PETITO AND LAUNDRIE FIGHTING ABOUT IN AUGUST?
When they were questioned by Utah police on August 12, Laundrie told officers that he and Petito were arguing over “normal couple stuff.”
In bodycam footage, he tells an officer that Petito gets “really worked up sometimes” and that he tries to “distance himself from it.”
The argument started, he said, when Petito tried to get the keys to the van off him. There also was a discrepancy over her phone, Laundrie explains.
He said he didn’t get “overtly physical” with Petito but did try to push her away while shouting at her.
At this time, Laundrie tells the officer that Petito was “already swinging” at him while holding her phone as he attempted to fend her off.
POLICE QUESTION WHY LAUNDRIE FAMILY WAS NOT TALKING
North Port Police spokesperson Josh Taylor said authorities are unsure why Brian Laundrie’s family did not report him missing until Friday.
“You know we’ve obviously been trying to reach the family to get answers in this case since (last) Saturday,” Taylor said.
“The first time that we’ve had any in-depth conversation with them was (Friday) when their attorney called and said the family was concerned about Brian’s whereabouts.”
LAUNDRIE’S ATTORNEY ON WHY HE DIDN’T DISCUSS PETITO’S DISAPPEARANCE
On Wednesday, Laundrie’s attorney released a statement about Petito’s disappearance.
“Many people are wondering why Mr. Laundrie would not make a statement or speak with law enforcement in the face of Ms. Petito’s absence,” it read.
“In my experience, intimate partners are often the first person law enforcement focus their attention on in cases like this and the warning that “any statement made will be used against you” is true, regardless of whether my client had anything to do with Ms. Petito’s disappearance.
“As such, on the advice of counsel Mr. Laundrie is not speaking on the matter.”
SEARCH CONDUCTED IN ‘VAST’ CARLTON RESERVE
The search for Brian Laundrie is continuing in the “vast” Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County, Florida.
Police said that both drones and bloodhounds were used in the search on Saturday.
PETITO’S FAMILY HAS BEGGED FOR ANSWERS
Gabby Petito’s mother, Nichole Schmidt, told the media she had sent Brian Laundrie and his family desperate texts about where Petito is but was ignored.
Laundrie has not yet been named a suspect but is considered a person of interest in the case.
In a statement, Petito’s family called Laundrie’s silence “reprehensible” and begged him to “do the right thing and help us bring Gabby home.”
WHAT DID THE POLICE REPORT SAY?
In the police report of the incident between the couple in August, Laundrie is listed as the victim and Petito as the suspect.
Police said all parties agreed that Petito had slapped Laundrie and that he had not struck her, and that there were no serious injuries and no party wanted to press charges.
The incident was categorized as a “mental/emotional health break” rather than a domestic assault.
WHEN DID PETITO AND LAUNDRIE SPEAK TO COPS?
Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie were both questioned by cops after a third party called police after seeing them engage in a physical altercation in Utah on August 12.
In shocking bodycam footage after the fight, Petito tells officers that the pair were fighting. Laundrie was left with some scratches on his arms, according to a police report.
Petito was visibly upset in the footage.
Officers instructed the pair to separate for the night.
LAUNDRIE’S FAMILY HAS NOT SEEN HIM ‘FOR DAYS’
Brian Laundrie’s family reported that they have not seen him since Tuesday, according to police.
They said he left home with his backpack and said he was going to the Carlton Reserve.
Authorities have been trying to locate him for information on his missing fiancee, Gabby Petito.
THE SEARCH FOR BRIAN LAUNDRIE CONTINUES
North Port Police confirmed that the search for Brian Laundrie had continued on Sunday morning.
WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT BRIAN LAUNDRIE
According to his Instagram bio, Brian Laundrie is a “nature enthusiast,” and his most recent pictures are from his cross-country travels.
His Instagram account also indicates that he is an artist as he has multiple pictures posted related to printmaking art.
Before her disappearance, Laundrie and Petito were working on documenting their journey on YouTube under the name “Nomadic Statik.”
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