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Gabby Petito: Everything You Need To Know About the Case

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FSU chapter.

Gabby Petito, a 22-year-old travel influencer, began on a four-month cross-country road trip with her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, which was supposed to end in October. Unfortunately, the trip ended earlier than planned. Here is a timeline of everything you need to know.

July 2-Aug. 12, 2021:

After converting their van on July 2, this Florida couple embarked on their trip, leaving New York to make their way to their first stop at the Monument Rocks Natural Landmark in Kansas. After leaving Kansas, the two visited Colorado Springs and the Great Sand Dunes National Park. It’s important to note while on their trip, both Gabby and Brian documented each stop on their Instagram, making it very easy to track the timeline of their journey. On July 16, Gabby shared on her Instagram that they have officially reached Zion National Park in Utah. In this state, they explore Bryce Canyon National Park, Mystic Hot Springs and Arches National Park. 

Aug. 12, 2021:

While visiting Arches National Park, Moab Police Department responded to a domestic violence incident that involved Gabby and Brian on Aug. 12. A bodycam recording from the responding officers went viral, showing Gabby in tears in their van while Brian was driving. Since there were no serious injuries reported between the couple, the police officers dismissed the incident and no one was charged.

Aug. 19, 2021:

On Aug. 19, the couple uploaded their very first YouTube video to their channel “@Van Life.” This video included a series of clips from various adventures of their road trip, where the two seemed to be very happy.

Aug. 24, 2021:

On this day, Gabby shared her last facetime call with her mother. Nicole Schmidt, the mother of Gabby Petito, shared a conversation with her daughter as they were leaving Salt Lake City and heading to Grand Teton National Park.

Aug. 25, 2021:

On Aug. 25, Gabby shared her last post to Instagram. This post included seven pictures of her posing in front of a butterfly wall, holding a crotched pumpkin with the caption, “Happy Halloween.”  

Aug. 25-30, 2021:

During this time frame, Gabby’s family received multiple text messages from her phone stating that she arrived at the Teton and again a few days later that the two were still there. On Aug. 30, Gabby’s family got a text message from her that states, “No service in Yosemite.” This is extremely important to mention since her family believes she did not send this text. 

Sept. 1, 2021: 

At this time, Brian returned home to his parent’s house in Florida, where the couple lived. Brian traveled back in the van that they had been traveling in without Gabby. 

Sept. 11, 2021:

On Sept. 11, Gabby’s family officially filed a missing person report for their daughter. Later that night, the North Port police department went to Brian’s home to figure out Gabby’s whereabouts, but no one would talk to them. The police department was given the family’s attorney information and no other details.

Sept. 14, 2021:

After the local police showed up at Brian’s family house, the police were then notified that Brian was missing and on the run from authorities. This day is officially the last day Brian’s parents saw him.

Sept. 19, 2021:

A viral video shared amongst social media showed a white van, similar to the vehicle the couple was traveling in, passing with a Florida license plate. This changed the investigation completely as now the investigation was focusing on where the van was seen in the video. After, a body was found and was then later confirmed to be Gabby Petito. Her body was discovered near the Bridger-Teton National Forest, the location of the spotted van in the video.

As of now, the FBI is still searching the family home of Brian Laundrie and still doesn’t know where he is, as he still remains missing. While Gabby’s family, unfortunately, knows the whereabouts of their daughter, they are fighting for answers and for Brian to be taken into custody. 

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Jenna is a current senior at Florida State University pursuing a degree in Psychology with a minor in Child Development. She enjoys expressing herself through her writing, music, and fashion.