Gabrielle Petito Died of Strangulation, Coroner Says


Gabrielle Petito, the Florida girl whose disappearance led to a wide-ranging investigation into her fiancé, who returned residence with out her from a cross-country journey earlier than disappearing himself, died of strangulation, the authorities mentioned on Tuesday.

Dr. Brent Blue, the Teton County, Wyo., coroner, didn’t disclose at a information briefing how Ms. Petito was strangled. He mentioned her physique had been exterior for 3 to 4 weeks earlier than it was discovered on Sept. 19 within the Bridger-Teton Nationwide Forest, in Wyoming.

The Teton County Coroner’s Workplace had decided on Sept. 21 that her dying was a murder, however Dr. Blue mentioned on Tuesday that he didn’t know the precise day Ms. Petito died.

“There won’t be a precise date of dying on the dying certificates,” he mentioned.

Dr. Blue revealed little else in regards to the situation of Ms. Petito’s physique, although he mentioned she was not pregnant on the time of her dying. The authorities carried out a toxicology check on her physique, which is being held at an area mortuary, however didn’t disclose the outcomes. Dr. Blue directed additional questions in regards to the murder to the F.B.I.

The police in Florida are nonetheless scouring an unlimited wildlife reserve within the state for Ms. Petito’s fiancé, Brian Laundrie, 23, who was described as a “individual of curiosity” by the police. Earlier than he went lacking, Mr. Laundrie had by means of a lawyer declined to talk to investigators, the police mentioned. The authorities later issued an arrest warrant for him on a cost of debit card fraud.

Ms. Petito and Mr. Laundrie got down to go to nationwide parks and journey the nation in July, in a white Ford van outfitted with a mattress and different requirements as a part of a “van life” journey.

On Sept. 1, Mr. Laundrie returned to the North Port, Fla., residence the place he lived together with his dad and mom and Ms. Petito, within the van, which was registered to Ms. Petito.

Ten days later, Ms. Petito’s household reported her lacking. The seek for her quickly concerned the F.B.I. and Nationwide Park rangers and stretched throughout at the very least two states.

Then, six days after Ms. Petito was reported lacking, Mr. Laundrie’s dad and mom instructed the police that they had not seen him for a number of days, beginning a second seek for a lacking individual. The authorities started to scour the 24,565 acres of a wildlife refuge, the Carlton Reserve, in Sarasota County, Fla., and the F.B.I. served a search warrant on the Laundrie residence.

As Ms. Petito’s household and the police pleaded for assist from the general public, the case drew intense curiosity on social media, together with from some who scrutinized the couple’s cheerful Instagram posts and others who criticized the dearth of comparable consideration on the instances of lacking ladies of coloration.

Ms. Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, mentioned final month that social media customers had been “superb” and “very influential” in his daughter’s case.

“To be sincere, it ought to proceed for different individuals, too,” he mentioned at a information convention. “This identical sort of heightened consciousness needs to be continued for everybody — everybody.”

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