Gabby Petito body may have been left outside in wilderness for weeks before being found, coroner says

By Helen Elfer
AP

Teton County Coroner Brent Blue has said that Gabby Petito’s time of death was likely to have been three to four weeks before her body was found.

Dr Blue said during a press conference on Tuesday that Gabby Petito died of strangulation, and he believes her body was out in the wilderness for several weeks before it was discovered in a Wyoming campsite.

He told reporters the autopsy took several weeks because they were “very exacting” in their examination and had to wait on specialists to assist in their work.

The bleak details came as authorities continued to search for her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, who was travelling with her before she died.

Gabby Petito’s body was found on September 19 in Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park. Information about whether she died in the location she was found, or if her body was buried, was not specified during the press conference.

However, Dr Blue did confirm that Ms Petito was not pregnant at the time of her death.

The coroner added that the manner of her death is still considered a homicide, in a confirmation of the initial autopsy results that were released last month.

He said “only the cause and manner of death” would be released per state statute and did not share details of how the autopsy results were determined.

Dr Blue also made no comment on who was responsible for her death.

Ms Petito went missing while on a cross-country road trip with Mr Laundrie, who returned home without her. He disappeared from his family’s home on September 13 and is the subject of a major manhunt that is still ongoing. A person of interest in the case, Mr Laundrie is also wanted by the FBI on charges of bank fraud.


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