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The producers of the television quiz show "Jeopardy" are under fire after referencing Gabby Petitio's fiancé and killer, Brian Laundrie, in a totally unrelated clue on the show's Sunday episode.
The episode of the celebrity-themed "Jeopardy" episode — featuring actors John Michael Higgins, Wil Wheaton and Joel Kim Booster — utilized the category "The A List" to prompt the contestants for words containing the letter "A."
Early in the match, according to video posted by TMZ, Booster selected the $200 clue in the category, and contestants were shown the Laundrie-themed question as co-host Mayim Bialik read the text.
"In 2021, fugitive Brian Laundrie ended his days in Fla.’s Myakkahatchee Creek area, home to these long & toothy critters," the clue read.
Booster guessed "What are alligators?" which Bialik confirmed was the right answer.
In a statement by their lawyer provided to Tampa NBC affiliate WFLA, Laundrie's parents wrote, “The entire Laundrie family is appalled and concurs with all of the comments on social media at how distasteful this was.”
"Jeopardy!" producers have not yet publicly responded to the online backlash.
Laundrie died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound sometime after his disappearance on Sept. 13, 2021. His significantly decomposed remains were found on Oct. 20, 2021, just north of the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in the T. Mabry Carlton Reserve near his home in North Port, Florida.
Near his body, investigators found a notebook in which Laundrie claimed responsibility for Petito’s death.
Petito and Laundrie had embarked on a cross-country trip together in July 2021, which was marred by the couple's fighting and allegations of domestic violence. Petito's mother last spoke to her on Aug. 25, and the last time the two were seen was on Aug. 27, when surveillance video captured them shopping at a Whole Foods in Jackson, Wyoming. From there, the couple appeared to be headed to the Bridger-Teton Forest area.
Petito was never heard from again. Laundrie returned alone to his parents' home in Petito's van on Sept. 1.
Petito's family reported her missing on Sept. 11; Laundrie himself disappeared two days later. He was named a person of interest in the case on Sept. 15, but his parents reported him missing two days after that.
Petito's remains were recovered in the Spread Creek Dispersed Camping Area of Bridger-Teton, just east of the Grand Teton National Forest, on Sept. 19. Her cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head and manual strangulation.
Petito's family is currently suing Laundrie's parents for what they say were the couple's "extreme and outrageous conduct" during the investigation into Petitio's disappearance. The Laundries' lawyer recently filed a motion to limit the scope of his clients' deposition in the case.
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