911 Caller said Brian Laundrie was slapping & hitting her, contradicting police body cam footage in which Gabby conceded hitting her boyfriend.
A man who called 911 to report a dispute between Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie told the dispatcher he saw a man hitting a female, according to audio of the call released on Monday (listen below) seemingly undermining the assertion of police that the incident was not a domestic assault.
‘We drove by and the gentleman was slapping the girl,’ the caller tells the dispatcher.
‘He was slapping her?’ the dispatcher replies.
‘Yes, and then we stopped. They ran up and down the sidewalk. He proceeded to hit her, hopped in the car and they drove off,’ the caller adds.
After the 911 call, the couple was pulled over by police in Moab, Utah, on Aug. 12, and their encounter with officers was captured on body camera footage (see below) that has been publicly released. In the footage, Petito, 22, admits to striking Laundrie, 23, and does not accuse Laundrie of being violent toward her.
Is Brian Laundrie facing criminal charges?
A responding officer wrote in the police report, ‘After evaluating the totality of the circumstances, I do not believe the situation escalated to the level of a domestic assault as much that of a mental health crisis.’
However, another officer wrote in the report, ‘It wasn’t clear, but I believe it was reported the male had been observed to have assaulted the female.’
After the couple spoke with police, Petito went back to the customized van in which the couple was traveling and Laundrie stayed the night in a hotel, the police report states.
Petito last made contact with her family on Aug. 24 and was reported missing on Sept. 11. On Sunday, authorities announced they had discovered a body in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming they believe is Petito’s. An autopsy in how Gabby died is scheduled to be released on Tuesday, possibly showing the deceased woman being the victim of foul play.
Police in North Port, Fla., where the Laundrie family lives and where the couple had lived before they set out on a cross-country trip in their van, have said they believe Petito was in the national park when she last contacted her family.
The weekend developments follow Gabby’s boyfriend/fiancee on Wednesday being named a person of interest in the case, and on Friday, authorities announced Laundrie is currently missing.
After Petito last contacted her parents, authorities discovered that Laundrie had quietly returned to his parents’ home in Florida without his fiancé. on Sept. 1, and 10 days passed before she was reported missing. During this time, Laundrie declined to reach out to Gabby’s parents to let them know he had returned to Florida without their daughter.
Brian Laundrie refused to meet with police to say what happened to the missing woman and when he last saw her, instead the boyfriend lawyered up, before eventually disappearing, and thought to now have gone into hiding.
Police stressed last week Brian was not considered a suspect in the case and at the time faced no criminal charges. That too may change contingent on whether autopsy results show Gabby being the victim of murder.