The press conference was held several weeks after the coroner confirmed that remains found on September 19th in Grand Teton National Park did belong to Petito. At the time, Coroner Blue determined the manner of death was a homicide, but was unable to offer any additional details.
Petito was reported missing on September 11th, disappearing two months into a what was supposed to be a four-month cross-country trip with her fiancé Brian Laundrie. Laundrie had returned to Florida at the beginning of September without Petito, but with her van. Petito’s family filed the missing person report after failing to get an answer about her whereabouts from Laundrie.
Laundrie then lawyered up and refused to speak with police. On September 17th, Laundrie’s parents allowed investigators Tinto their home in North Port, Florida. At that point, the Laundriees revealed that they had not seen their son in three days. The FBI is still searching for Laundrie, who is considered a person of interest and is wanted on a warrant for debit card fraud committed after Petito’s death.
A month before Petito’s disappearance, a police report as filed after Petito and Laundrie got into a fight in Moab, Utah. A person called the police about “some sort of altercation” outside a shop, and while officers pulled them over in their van, they decided the incident had been more of a “mental/emotional health ‘break’ than a domestic assault.” Neither Petito nor Laundrie wanted to file charges against the other, but police still separated them for a night, sending Laundrie to a hotel and leaving Petito with the van.