As the investigation surrounding missing hiker Gabby Petito continues, leads now seem to present themselves left and right. One of the first reports came from a pair of YouTubers who unknowingly captured Petito’s van in footage last month. Now, a new lead has emerged.
According to an Idaho businesswoman, Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie stopped at her store late last month. Despite the discomforting news that has unfolded since Petito went missing, the woman said the two appeared happy during their trip.
According to the business owner from Victor, ID, Petito and Laundrie stopped at the store between August 25th and 26th. Compared to previous reports, this puts Petito’s last known location away from Grand Teton National Park on the 24th. It instead puts her in Idaho between the 25th and 26th.
The woman further said the couple spent about 15 or 20 minutes in the store. Supposedly, the two appeared happy.
In discussion with East Idaho News, the woman reported, “They told me they were traveling from Florida. They had just been to Teton Park and they said they were interested in going to Yellowstone.”
She added that she told Petito and Laundrie they could go to the park’s west entrance.
However, the most interesting aspect of the interaction came as Petito and Laundrie left the Rustic Row. As earlier leads, such as Petito’s haunting playlists and the earlier domestic assault call indicate otherwise, the business owner said, “They seemed happy,” nonetheless.
She continued, “[W]hen they left, she hollered back from the door that they were engaged and I said congratulations.” Nothing more came of the interaction, although, if the report is accurate, Petito was still alive after the couple’s initial visit to Grand Teton National Park.
Discrepancies Arise Surrounding Gabby Petito’s Almost-Assault Charge
Although until recently, bodycam footage from the domestic dispute call reports Petito was the one to initiate the physical assault.
The call, however, states otherwise. According to the 911 caller, he and a companion were passing by when they saw the two arguing. The man tells the dispatcher he’d like to report a domestic dispute. He said he caught sight of a white van with a Florida license plate, specifically identifying Petito’s van.
When the dispatcher asks what took place, the caller said, “We drove by them and the gentleman was slapping the girl.”
The caller then claims Laundrie stopped, “They ran up and down the sidewalk, he proceeded to hit her, hopped in the car and they drove off.”
Further footage witnesses Laundrie telling officers that the two had been fighting but nothing got physical until he pushed her away. Supposedly, that’s when Petito began hitting and slapping Laundrie.
However, when officers asked Petito about the incident, she said Laundrie grabbed her face by the chin and pushed her away. The officer then asked about Laundrie reportedly slapping her. However, she insisted he only grabbed her face to push her away.
So, while details remain murky, leads have begun providing further insight into the investigation. Now, we can only hope authorities locate Laundrie and the rest of this mystery unwinds.