Missing Hiker Gabby Petito: Autopsy Being Performed This Week on Remains Discovered by FBI

by Josh Lanier

Authorities found the remains of a woman during their search for Gabby Petito, who’s been missing since late last month. The body matches the description of Petito. Though, police won’t say anything further until a coroner completes an autopsy Tuesday.

The medical examiner will try to ID the body through photos, personal identification markers, and DNA, CNN said.

The FBI said agents told Petito’s parents about the grizzly discovery, NPR reported.

Her dad, Joseph Petito, tweeted out a photo of Gabby after the news broke, saying “she touched the world.”

Gabby Petito last spoke with her family on Aug. 25. Since then, no one has seen the 22-year-old. She was on a cross-country road trip to national parks with her fiance Brian Laundrie as part of a YouTube “Van Life” channel. People saw Laundrie several times in and around the Wyoming national park after Aug. 25 without her. And he returned home to Florida on Sept. 1 alone.

FBI agents are asking anyone who believes they saw Gabby Petito, Laundrie, or their van around these dates to contact investigators. They are building a timeline of her last known locations to try to piece together what happened.

A travel vlog couple believes they spotted Petito’s van two days after she last spoke to her family.

“We came across a white van that had Florida plates,” said blogger Jenn Bethune in a video uploaded to YouTube. “A small white van. We were going to stop and say hi because we’re from Florida too, but the van was completely dark. There was nobody there, so we decided to continue on our way.”

Petito’s family wrote on Facebook that the van in the video appears to be Gabby’s, Fox News said.

Police: No Major Search Monday for Laundrie in Natural Preserve

The push to find Brian Laundrie is intensifying with the discovery of a body that is believed to be Gabby Petito. But after two days of clambering through the Carlton Reserve in Florida, police say they’ve hit a dead end.

“At this time, we currently believe we have exhausted all avenues in searching of the grounds there. Law enforcement agencies continue to search for Brian Laundrie,” according to a police statement on Monday. “The North Port Police Department currently has no plans to conduct a major search of the Carlton Reserve today.”

Laundrie and his family didn’t cooperate with the authorities, North Port Police in Florida said last week. In fact, they didn’t speak to the investigators at length until Friday, but that was only to report Laundrie missing. His parents told authorities that they last spoke to him on Tuesday of last week. That’s when he left with a backpack, saying he planned to visit the nearby preserve.

Police have not called Laundrie a suspect in the disappearance of Gabby Petito, only a “person of interest.” But the Petito family believes he ran away to the preserve to hide.

“All of Gabby’s family want the world to know that Brian is not missing, he is hiding. Gabby is missing,” they said through their attorney.

Investigators plan to widen the scope of their search for Laundrie.