A just-released notebook from Brian Laundrie details his confession and what happened before her death.
The Laundrie family attorney, Attorney Steven Bertolino, provided WINK News with a copy of the notebook.
The confession in the notebook reads “I ended her life, I thought it was merciful, that it is what she wanted, but I see now all the mistakes I made. I panicked, I was in shock. But from the moment I decided, took away her pain, I knew I couldn’t go on without her.”
DOCUMENT: Read the notebook
The FBI opened its investigation into the disappearance of Gabby on September 12, 2021, upon receiving reports from Gabby’s family that Ms. Petito was missing.
The FBI, working with federal, state and local officials, organized a search of a remote area within the Grand Teton National Park and the Bridger-Teton National Forest.
On September 19, 2021, the search team located Gabby’s remains of at the Spread Creek Dispersed Camping Area near where she and Brian Laundrie had been seen together.
According to the FBI, Gabby was found approximately three weeks after her last known communication.
The Teton County Coroner’s Office concluded she died of “blunt-force injuries to the head and neck, with manual strangulation.”
While law enforcement investigated leads, the investigation quickly focused on the last person believed to see her alive— Brian Laundrie.
Bertolino said in a statement Friday:
“Today the Petito family attorney, Patrick Reilly, and myself met with the FBI in Tampa to sort through and take possession of the personal items that belonged to Gabby and Brian. This was a previously agreed upon exchange to enable both the Petitos and the Laundries to receive what belonged to their respective children. As part of this return of property in FBI custody I was given Brian’s notebook. I would like to share with the public the note that the FBI alluded to when they said on January 21, 2022 that Brian claimed responsibility for the death of Gabby Petito. Although I have chosen to release this letter as a matter of transparency I will not be commenting further as there are still proceedings pending in Court. These are Brian’s words:”
DOCUMENT: Read the notebook
The following is a timeline of the investigation:
- The FBI investigation revealed that, between August 30 and September 1, 2021, Mr. Laundrie had used Ms. Petito’s debit card without authorization on his drive back to Florida from Wyoming.
- After Ms. Petito’s death, there were several text messages identified between Mr. Laundrie’s telephone and Ms. Petito’s telephone. The timing and content of these messages are indicative of Mr. Laundrie attempting to deceive law enforcement by giving the impression that Ms. Petito was still alive.
- On September 15, 2021, Mr. Laundrie’s Ford Mustang was recovered from the T. Mabry Carlton Jr. Memorial Reserve and Myakkahatchee Creek Park in North Port, Florida.
- On September 17, 2021, Mr. Laundrie’s parents reported him missing shortly after law enforcement conducted a welfare check at their residence.
- On September 18, 2021, law enforcement officials commenced an extensive search of the park where Mr. Laundrie’s vehicle was parked and did not locate Mr. Laundrie. The area where Mr. Laundrie’s remains were later found was part of this search area, but the area was submerged due to recent flooding at the time of this initial search.
- On September 22, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the District of Wyoming issued a federal arrest warrant for Mr. Laundrie. The warrant was issued pursuant to a Federal Grand Jury indictment for violation of federal statute 18 U.S.C. § 1029(a)(1): “Use of Unauthorized Access Devices” related to Mr. Laundrie’s activities following the death of Ms. Petito.
- On October 7, 2021, after law enforcement made a request through Laundrie family attorney Steven Bertolino, the Laundries provided personal effects to law enforcement which were to be used to assist in the search of the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park.
- On October 20, 2021, after water had receded from the area and the park was reopened, Mr. Bertolino notified law enforcement that Mr. Laundrie’s parents intended to return to the park to search for Mr. Laundrie. Law enforcement officers were present when Mr. Laundrie’s parents located an item in the park later determined to belong to Mr. Laundrie.
- Upon further search of the area, investigators found human remains later confirmed to be Mr. Laundrie, along with a backpack, notebook, and a revolver. A review of the notebook revealed written statements by Mr. Laundrie claiming responsibility for Ms. Petito’s death.
- On November 23, 2021, the District 12 Medical Examiner’s Office in Sarasota, Florida, released its report on the manner and cause of death of Mr. Laundrie. The report concluded Mr. Laundrie died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.