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The sister of high-profile murder victim Ron Goldman would like to speak with the family of Gabby Petito about the media frenzy surrounding the young woman's case.
Kim Goldman, 50 — a victim’s advocate and author — launched a new podcast entitled “Media Circus” in June to explore the media coverage of high-profile crimes through conversations with the relatives of crime victims whose cases faced intense media scrutiny.
Now, she'd like to talk to Petito’s family and to offer them a platform to express themselves.
"Gabby’s case is one of those conversations that I’ve had with our team," Kim told Fox News. "The power of media and social media, I think, helped bring that case to where it became that we found Gabby."
Petito’s family was thrust into the spotlight last August after Petito, 22, vanished during a cross-country trip with her boyfriend Brian Laundrie, 23. Laundrie returned to his parents’ home in Florida before also vanishing. From there, a nationwide search to locate Petito — and the manhunt for Laundrie — captivated America and became one of 2021's biggest stories.
Her family have since used the platform provided by the notoriety around her case to advocate for other missing persons who have not received as much media attention as Petito. They and other advocates have criticized the media for focusing on the Petito case while ignoring missing persons of color.
The media circus is something that Kim would like to discuss with the family.
"I want to understand how that impacted their grief," Goldman told Fox News, regarding them media circus. "Did it help their case? Did it hurt their case? Did having so much support benefit them? Did it lead police on wild goose chases that took them away from other legitimate leads?"
"There are all these things that I think we need to be paying attention to," she added. "Our armchair detectives, does that help or hinder? And how can we do better at that?"
Goldman's life was changed in 1994, when her brother Ron Goldman, 25, was killed alongside his friend, 35-year-old Nicole Brown Simpson, O.J. Simpson’s former wife. The disgraced football star was charged in both murders but acquitted in 1995 after a contentious and highly publicized trial. Two years later, Simpson was found liable for both Goldman's and Brown Simpson's deaths in civil court.
Petito's remains were ultimately found in Wyoming weeks after she was reported missing. Laundrie's body was found in a Florida nature preserve a few weeks after that, and it was determined that he died from a self-inflicted gunshot. The FBI determined in January that Laundrie was responsible for Petito’s murder.
A judge in a civil lawsuit brought by Petito's family against the Laundries recently called the inaction of Laundrie’s parents during the hunt for Petito “cruel,” in a case in which her family alleges his family failed to disclose information about their son or the whereabouts of Gabby.
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