Gabrielle Venora Petito was an American woman who was killed by her fiancé. She born on March 19, 1999, and she was pronounced dead on late August 2021.
Gabby Petito’s Life and Education with Family
Gabby was born and raised in Blue Point, New York. She had six younger siblings and half-siblings. In 2013, Petito and her stepbrothers appeared in a music video to raise awareness about American gun violence in response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. In 2017, she graduated from Bayport-Blue Point High School in Bayport, New York, where she met Brian Christopher Laundrie. From September 2017 to January 2019, she lived in Carolina Beach, North Carolina, working as a hostess and in the kitchen of a restaurant in nearby Wilmington. She applied to Cape Fear Community College but did not attend.
Is Gabby Petito in a Relationship?
Petito began dating Laundrie in March 2019 and moved in with him and his parents in North Port, Florida. The couple worked at a Publix in North Port, where she was a pharmacy technician, and he was in the grocery department. They quit their jobs at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In late 2019 and early 2020, the couple embarked on a cross-country drive from New York to California. Along the way, they visited Las Vegas, Yosemite National Park, Pismo Beach, and other points of interest. In March 2020, Petito celebrated her 21st birthday in Nokomis, Florida. She and Laundrie visited Sope Creek, Georgia, in June 2020, and the two were engaged the following month.
In December 2020, Petito purchased a 2012 Ford Transit Connect van converted into a camper, in which the couple would take their next cross-country trip. To save money for the trip, she began working 50-hour weeks at Taco Bell and as a nutritionist while Laundrie took a job at an organic juice bar. Petito documented her life and travels on social media sites such as YouTube and Instagram, where she described her interests as “art, yoga, and veggies.
Gabby Petito’s Relationship Crisis that lead to her death
Gabrielle Venora Petito was killed by her supposed fiancé, Brian Laundrie at the age of 22 while they were traveling together on a van life journey across the United States. The trip was planned to last for four months and began on July 2, 2021, but Petito disappeared in late August.
After Petito’s disappearance, Laundrie raised suspicion when he drove the van from Wyoming back to his parents’ Florida home and refused to discuss her whereabouts. He was deemed a person of interest in the case and an arrest warrant was issued on charges of him making withdrawals using her debit card. He left his home on September 13 and was reported missing four days later.
On September 19, Petito’s remains were found in Wyoming’s Bridger–Teton National Forest. An autopsy found that she was killed by manual strangulation. After a month of speculation around Laundrie’s whereabouts, and an extended search of the area around his home, her skeletal remains were discovered in Florida’s Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park on October 20. It was confirmed by an autopsy on November 23 that Laundrie had died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, and the FBI later announced that he had admitted to killing Petito in his notebook, which was found near his remains.
The case gained widespread attention due to the couple’s documenting of their travels on social media, leaked police body camera video footage, 9-1-1 emergency dispatch call recordings, eyewitness accounts, the actions of Laundrie’s parents, and the extensive media coverage.
Public involvement in the case of Gabby Petiti included witnesses and others posting their observations and theories on social media, protestors demanding answers outside the Laundrie home, a candlelight vigil for Petito in her hometown, and donations to the Gabby Petito Foundation established by her parents to support searches for other missing persons. The increased interest in the search for Laundrie and Petito led to the discovery of five bodies of other missing persons. While some posts on social media regarding the case were helpful in the investigation, many of them have been characterized as insensitive, unhelpful, motivated by potentially increased exposure or financial reward, or outright misinformation.
The high volume of media coverage of the case was cited among some commentators as an example of missing white woman syndrome, which is defined as the news media’s over-emphasis on missing person cases involving young, attractive, white, upper-middle-class women or girls compared to the relative lack of attention towards people who go missing and do not fit that description. In comparing Petito’s case to others, several outlets noted the relative lack of media attention towards the approximately 710 indigenous people who were reported missing in or near the same location from 2011 to 2020. Petito’s parents announced plans to sue Laundrie’s parents in June 2022, with a Florida judge allowing the suit to proceed. In November 2022, her parents filed a $50 million lawsuit against the Moab police department.