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Moab police body cam video shows Petito upset during fight with boyfriend before she disappeared

Witness called 911 to report 'possible domestic violence' incident in Moab
Posted at 9:33 AM, Sep 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-16 20:26:46-04

MOAB, Utah — Police in Moab have released body cam footage showing officers interacting with Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie after a witness called 911 two weeks before she disappeared.

The body cam footage provided to FOX 13 News by the Moab police department is over an hour long and has not been edited by FOX 13 News. It may contain explicit language. Viewer discretion is advised.

The video shows officers from the Moab City Police Department talking to a visibly distraught Petito – and Laundrie – after their white van was pulled over in Arches National Park.

The couple was pulled over after a 911 call in Moab about a possible domestic violence situation.

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Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie

Witnesses saw Gabby Petito and boyfriend fighting in Moab, police say

A witness called 911 around 4:30 p.m. on Aug. 12 over "possible domestic violence" near Moonflower Community Cooperative in Moab and said they saw Petito and Laundrie arguing over a phone.

"The driver of the van, a male, had some sort of argument with the female, Gabbie," a responding officer wrote in the report, citing conversations he had with Petito, Laundrie, and the witness.

"The male tried to create distance by telling Gabbie to go take a walk to calm down, she didn’t want to be separated from the male, and began slapping him," the report said. "He grabbed her face and pushed her back as she pressed upon him and the van, he tried to lock her out and succeeded except for his driver’s door, she opened that and forced her way over him and into the vehicle before it drove off."

A responding officer initially wrote that he believes "it was reported the male had been observed to have assaulted the female," but later wrote that "no one reported that the male struck the female."

An officer eventually pulled the van over and said that when he approached, Petito was "crying uncontrollably" in the passenger seat.

One of the responding officers described the incident "more accurately as a mental/emotional health ‘break’ than a domestic assault," and that "no significant injuries" were reported.

According to the Moab police report, Laundrie stayed in a hotel that night, while Petito stayed with the van.

Petito's last known location was Aug. 25 in Grand Teton National Park. Before that FOX 13 confirmed she stayed in a hotel for more than one night near the Salt Lake City International Airport.

Laundrie, meanwhile, drove back to the Florida Gulf Coast town of North Port, where their trip began, on Sept. 1, and the van was recovered by police at his family's home on Sept. 11.

Officials are urging anyone with information regarding the case to contact 1-800-CALL-FBI.