A FACEBOOK page created by the family of Gabby Petito in the hopes of finding their daughter alive has released an emotional status, saying, “Our hearts are broken,” after an autopsy on Tuesday confirmed the 22-year-old’s death.
The four-word post was accompanied by a release from the FBI’s offices in Denver, which confirmed human remains discovered on Sunday were those of Gabby and that the coroner’s initial determination for the manner of death is homicide.
A second post, uploaded roughly 90 minutes later and to the same Facebook page, read “#justiceforgabby” and featured an artwork of the 22-year-old with angel wings, a halo and surrounded by two white doves.
Petito’s disappearance and news of her death has gripped the nation over recent days, with authorities still searching for her fiancé, Brian Laundrie.
He and Petito were roughly two months into a four-month adventure when Laundrie returned to his Florida home with their van on September 1.
Now, Laundrie is also missing, and police began to search a 24,000-acre Florida nature preserve over the weekend without success.
On Tuesday, a woman claimed she spotted a man who she is now certain was Laundrie “acting weird” around the Wyoming campsite where Petito was found dead.
“I will be in contact with you when Gabby’s family is ready to make a public statement.”
Stafford thanked the FBI, the Suffolk County Police Department, and the North Port Police Department, with a special message of gratitude for the Grand Teton Search and Rescue Team.
“Your tireless work and determination helped bring Gabby home to her parents,” Stafford wrote. “The family and I will be forever grateful.”
Laundrie’s family also made a statement via their attorney, saying: “The news about Gabby Petito is heartbreaking.”
The statement added: “The Laundrie family prays for Gabby and her family.”
Petito was last seen on August 24, 2021, checking out of a hotel with Laundrie in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Her mother, Nicole Schmidt, revealed that she heard from her daughter on August 27 and 30, but 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.
On the day of the autopsy results, a witness statement taken by Moab County Police, in Utah, came to light, where a man said he saw Petito and Laundrie fighting on August 12.
The witness said “something seemed off” and “it appeared that he didn’t want her in the white van.”
“I heard her say ‘why do you have to be so mean,” the witness added. “It was as if the guy was trying to leave her, and maybe take her phone? Not sure but wanted to help out,” the witness added.
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