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Police Were Called On Gabby Petito And Her Boyfriend During Their Cross-Country Trip
Police in Moab, Utah said that neither Gabrielle Petito nor Brian Laundrie were the reporting party for the Aug. 12 incident, though they released few other details about the encounter.
Before Gabby Petito vanished on a cross-country trip she'd been taking with her boyfriend, police were called on the couple in Utah.
Petito, 22, was reported missing on Saturday by her family in Long Island, New York after they lost contact with her in late August, according to a statement from the Suffolk County Police Department previously obtained by Oxygen.com.
Two weeks prior, police were called on Petito and her 23-year-old boyfriend Brian Laundrie as they traveled through Utah.
Moab Police Chief Bret Edge Oxygen.com in a statement Wednesday that his officers responded to an incident involving the couple on August 12.
He noted that “neither Brian or Gabrielle were the reporting party."
“Officers conducted an investigation and determined that insufficient evidence existed to justify criminal charges,” he said.
Edge did not provide further details.
Petito’s mother, Nicole Schmidt, told Fox News the last time she verbally spoke to her daughter was on Aug. 25 when she and Laundrie were camping in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming.
Laundrie has since returned to his home in North Port, Florida where investigators have said they're attempting to contact him.
"We would like to talk to him," North Port Police spokesman Josh Taylor told Oxygen.com on Tuesday. "The fact he was the last person seen with her makes him someone we would be interested in talking to.”
Taylor said that police had talked to Laundrie’s parents and they referred authorities to their son’s attorney.
Laundrie has not been identified as a suspect in the case and Taylor told Oxygen.com that there’s no evidence of a crime at this point.
Both Laundrie and Petito had been traveling across the country in a white 2012 Ford Transit van that they converted into a camper van. Police have since recovered the van at the home of Laundrie’s parents, WTVT in Tampa Bay reports.
On August 19, mere days before her family last heard from her, Petito posted an eight-minute video on YouTube documenting the couple’s journey. The video, entitled “Beginning Our Van Life Journey,” shows the couple laughing, kissing, and doing cartwheels on the beach.
On Tuesday, Petito’s parents released a statement pleading with Laundrie to give more information about their daughter’s possible whereabouts, NBC News reports.
“The Schmidt and Petito family are going through the worst moments of their lives,” the statement reads. “Their beautiful 22-year-old daughter is missing and the one person who can help find Gabby refuses to help. Brian Laundrie was traveling with Gabby in the Grand Teton-Yellowstone area. They were traveling together in Gabby’s 2021 Ford Transit van. This is where we believe Gabby was last seen.”
Laundrie’s Instagram has become flooded with comments, Fox News reports. Many are demanding to know where his missing girlfriend is.
His attorney released a statement Tuesday that reads, “on behalf of the Laundrie family, it is our hope that the search for Miss Petito is successful and that Miss Petito is reunited with her family.”
It goes on to say that “on the advice of counsel, the Laundrie family is remaining in the background at this juncture and will have no further comment."
Petito has been described by police as a white female, approximately 5 feet 5 inches tall and 110 pounds. She has blonde hair and blue eyes, along with several distinctive tattoos including one on her forearm that reads, “Let it be.”
Anyone with information on Petito’s disappearance is urged to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. All calls can remain anonymous.
"The Murder of Gabby Petito: Truth, Lies and Social Media" will air on Oxygen on Monday, January 24 at 9/8c. It's also available to stream on Peacock now.