The family of Gabby Petito, who was killed in August 2021 by her fiance Brian Laundrie, says that their daughter’s killer’s father admitted during a deposition that he received a “frantic” phone call from his son, who told his parents that Petito was “gone” — 13 days before any law enforcement agency was notified she was even missing.
The revelation comes in an amended complaint filed last week in the ongoing civil case between Gabby Petito’s parents Joseph Petito and Nichole Schmidt against Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie.
“On August 29, 2021, Brian Laundrie advised his parents, Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie, in a frantic telephone call that Gabby was ‘gone’ and he needed a lawyer,” the complaint says. “On August 29, 2021, Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie spoke with Steven Bertolino, advising him that Gabrielle Petito was ‘gone,’ that Brian Laundrie needed a lawyer, and sent him a retainer on September 2, 2021.”
Gabby Petito was not reported missing until Sept. 11, 2021.
Details of that phone call came to light during a deposition.
“The depositions of the parties have now been taken, and the Plaintiffs wish to amend their Complaint based upon what they learned through discovery to conform the pleadings to the evidence raised,” according to an Oct. 27 filing by lawyers for Joseph Petito and Nichole Schmidt.
Gabby Petito’s parents sued Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie in March 2022, alleging that Brian Laundrie, 23, had told his parents that he killed his girlfriend while they were on a trip in Wyoming and that the Laundries not only didn’t share this information with Petito and Schmidt, they tried to make arrangements for their son to leave the country.
Gabby Petito was 22 years old when she was killed.
As Law&Crime has previously reported, the Petitos are also suing Bertolino, the Laundrie family lawyer who they say knew the location of their daughter’s remains at the time he released a statement on behalf of the Laundrie family expressing home that Gabby Petito would be “reunited” with her family.
The third amended complaint maintains previous allegations that the Laundries knew not only that their son had killed Gabby Petito, but that they knew where her remains were located and withheld that information, even going on vacation.
“After Brian Laundrie murdered Gabrielle Petito, Brian Laundrie sent text messages back and forth between his cell phone and Gabrielle Petito’s cell phone in an effort to hide the fact that she was deceased,” the complaint says. “On August 27, 2021, it is believed that Brian Laundrie sent a text to Nichole Schmidt in which he referred to Gabrielle Petito’s grandfather, Stan, by name. Gabrielle Petito never called her grandfather by his name.”
Brian Laundrie died by suicide after returning home to Florida.
Read the third amended complaint, below.
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