Petito Murder Documentary to Air This Week, Only Months After Gabby Initially Reported Missing


Just three months ago, Gabby Petito’s remains were found in Wyoming. On Friday, NBC’s Peacock streaming service will release a documentary detailing her story.

The documentary is titled “The Murder of Gabby Petito: Truth, Lies and Social Media.”

Petito’s parents and stepparents will be featured in the film, the Herald-Tribune in Sarasota, Florida, reported Wednesday.

“It was like every parents’ nightmare,” Petito’s stepfather, Jim Schmidt, said in the trailer. “Just like, in a flash of a second. She’s gone, she’s missing.”

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In July, Petito and her ex-fiance, Brian Laundrie, left from New York for a four-month trip around the United States. They were traveling in a white van and documenting their travels on social media, CBS News reported.

On Aug. 12, someone witnessed a dispute between Laundrie and Petito and called the police. Officers in Moab, Utah, separated the two for the night but neither was arrested.

The couple posted a video to YouTube titled “Van Life: Beginning Our Van Life Journey” on Aug. 19. It would prove to be their last video together.

Petito was last seen before her death on Aug. 24 in Salt Lake City, Utah, CBS News reported. On Aug. 25, she posted her last photo to Instagram.

Will you watch this documentary?

On Sept. 1, Laundrie returned home to North Port, Florida, by himself. It was not until 10 days later, on Sept. 11, that Petito was reported missing.

After beginning their search for Petito, North Port police declared Laundrie a person of interest on Sept. 15. He too then disappeared, and police began to search for him in the Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County, Florida, on Sept. 18.

“That time when we were looking for Gabby was … it’s a blur,” her father, Joe Petito, said in the trailer.

According to CBS News, police found her remains in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on Sept. 19. Two days later, a coroner ruled her death a homicide.

An arrest warrant was issued for Laundrie on Sept. 23, but he would not be found alive. Police discovered his remains in the Carlton Reserve on Oct. 20.

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On Nov. 23, Laundrie family attorney Steven Bertolino said Brian’s cause of death was a self-inflicted gunshot to the head.

Many questions remain regarding Petito’s death, and this documentary certainly won’t be able to answer all of them. However, it appears Petito’s family hopes to use the tragedy to raise awareness about domestic abuse.

“Everybody deserves to feel safe at home,” Schmidt said in the trailer. “Everybody deserves to be found that is missing. Everyone.”

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Grant is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He has five years of writing experience with various outlets and enjoys covering politics and sports.
Grant is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a bachelor's degree in journalism. He has five years of writing experience with various outlets and enjoys covering politics and sports.