A newly released photo shows Gabby Petito with a bruised and cut face shortly before an encounter with Moab City Police Department officers in Utah, and weeks before her murder in Wyoming.
According to TMX, the photo was shared by lawyers for the Petito family, who have filed a lawsuit against Moab police over how they handled the Aug. 12, 2021, encounter. Petito, 22, appears with blood over her left eye.
Moab police responded to the scene after a 911 caller reported seeing Petito being attacked by her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie. Police let both go after determining Petito had been the aggressor.
According to the complaint, footage from body-worn camera video shows that Petito described her injury, which included blood across her nose and left eye, “indicating that she was grabbed over her face in such a way that her airways were likely obstructed.”
Officers “ignored her and did nothing more to investigate or document the injury,” the complaint alleges. Attorneys say the manner of obstructing Petito’s airway is a form of strangulation, and should have been investigated further according to Utah law.
Petito was beaten and strangled to death on Aug. 28, just over two weeks later, in Wyoming. Her remains were found on Sept. 18.
Laundrie drove home to Florida in Petito’s van and later went missing. He was found dead on Oct. 20 with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He left a handwritten note confessing to Petito’s murder.
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