The Mysterious Disappearance & Murder of Gabby Petito

Long Island native, Gabby Petito was reported missing after her family hadn’t heard from her while touring the country with her boyfriend. The week-long search made national news.


Photo by Screenshot from Instagram

Gabby’s Instagram post from July 21, one month before her family stopped receiving contact. Amateur internet sleuths descended on Gabby’s social media to try to put the pieces of her disappearance together.

Originally from Bayport, Long Island, Gabby Petito was recently the victim of a missing persons case. This case began making national headlines and is still (unfortunately) ongoing. With the case being across America and involving the FBI, here is a brief timeline of what you need to know.

Background: Gabby Petito and long-term boyfriend Brian Laundrie got engaged after being together for a while. After living together at Laundrie’s parents house in North Port, FL for about a year, they went back to Petito’s house to prepare for a cross country trip.

July: Petito and Laundrie left for their planned road trip across the country. They started on Long Island and began making their way west in their van. They traveled through Utah and Colorado, continuously vlogging and posting their adventures, seemingly being happy together.

August 12th: A bystander reported seeing Laundrie repeatedly slap Petito and chase her down a sidewalk when they were in Utah. They called the police reporting a “domestic incident.” The police were then able to find the couple and question them, with the couple saying that they were arguing and that Petito slapped Laundrie, but there was no physical contact the other way around.

August 24th: This was the last day Gabby Petito was reportedly seen alive. This was when she was seen checking out of a hotel in Salt Lake City.

August 25th: Petito and her mother, Nicole Schmidt, were in contact normally on this day, discussing her plans with her YouTube channel and how her and Laundrie were on their way to the Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks, both in Wyoming. While there were a few texts sent after this conversation, it is believed that it wasn’t Petito sending them.

August 29th: After the Denver FBI began asking for help to search for Gabby after she was believed to be missing, someone posted a TikTok several days later claiming they gave Laundrie a ride at Grand Teton National Park. They said he claims that he was camping alone for several days while Petito worked on their social media account in the van.

September 1st: A bystander called the police and reported domestic violence after claiming Laundrie repeatedly slapped Petito and chased her down a sidewalk. After the police found them since they drove off, the couple confirmed that they were in an argument and that Petito slapped Laundrie, but they mentioned nothing about physical contact the other way around.

September 11th: Petito was officially reported missing by her family to Suffolk County Police Department. They said she was most likely in Grand Teton National Park and that they hadn’t heard from her in a few days, which was very unusual.

September 14th-15th: Laundrie’s attorney announced that he would not be saying anything until further notice, and he was then named a person of interest the following day.

September 16th-17th: After the Petito family pleaded for the Laundrie family to comply, Brian was then reported missing by his family, saying he left to go “meditate” in the Carlton Reserve. He then never returned as his mother and father said they found his mustang left in the parking lot.

September 19th: After hours upon hours of searching, the Teton County coroner revealed that there was a body discovered in the park, where many found out to be only around 60 feet from where the last picture of Gabby’s van was taken. The FBI immediately announced their condolences to the Petito/Schmidt family, as the body perfectly matched Gabby’s description. However, they also said that there would be an autopsy conducted to confirm the identity and cause of death.

September 21st: Unfortunately, what everyone wanted to not be true was proven. The body found was confirmed to be that of 22-year-old Gabby Petito. The current cause of death is homicide, but the exact reason has not been identified. The FBI also searched the house of Laundrie’s parents and sister and found nothing.

September 23rd: An arrest warrant was issued in the state of Wyoming for Brian Laundrie.

With Laundrie MIA and no evidence as to his whereabouts, what are your thoughts?

Condolences to the Petito/Schmidt family. RIP Gabby Petito, 1999-2021.