Gabby Petito Bodycam Footage Released: Did Police Help to Conceal Brian Laundrie’s Abuse?
Ever since Gabby Petito’s body was found on September 19 the consensus among those who have been following the case is that Brian Laundrie is guilty of her murder.
While Laundrie has not been formally charged with the crime, there are many reasons why so many have jumped to this conclusion, only one of which is the fact that he’s been evading the authorities for weeks now.
Prior to Petito’s disappearance, she and Laundrie had been involved in at least two altercations that turned physical.
The most recent of these incidents took place just weeks before Petito went missing.
Petito and Laundrie were traversing the United States and documenting the journey for their popular “van life” YouTube channel at the time of the altercation.
Two officers in Moab, Utah pulled the couple over after observing signs of a possible domestic violence situation.
Until this week, only the footage taken by one officer — Officer Daniel Robbin — had been released to the public.
Following public outcry and a tense stand-off between Grand County Attorney, Happy Morgan and Moab Police Acting Chief Braydon Palmer, footage taken by the other officer — Officer Eric Pratt — has now been made public.
And it tells of a very different story about the relationship between Petito and Laundrie.
The previous footage showed the officers commiserating with a calm and cooperative Laundrie.
The 23-year-old offered police his side of the story, and the two officers went so far as to joke that they “feel bad for him.”
The interview with Petito could not have been more different, as the tearful 21-year-old alleged that Laundrie “grabbed [her] face” and left a “burning” gash on her cheek during a fight that had taken place earlier that day.
Initially, officers planned to arrest Petito, as she admitted to striking Laundrie during the altercation.
During a September 28 city council meeting Morgan demanded that Chief Palmer release the Petito footage.
“It became obvious to me watching the news that information had been withheld from the media,” he told the assembled officials.
“Two officers responded that day – Pratt and Robbins. Where’s Pratt’s camera? Every news agency in the United States has requested it and they have not been turned over.”
Morgan concluded his speech with a stern warning:
“The sooner you come clean about Pratt’s body camera for the August 12 Petito/Laundrie matter, the better. That information has been GRAMA [Government Records Access Management Act] requested by multiple agencies,” he said.
“If it was withheld, you need to provide it and apologize,” Morgan continued.
“If it doesn’t exist then the sooner you own up to that, the better.”
It’s unclear why the footage was withheld in the first place, but the likeliest explanation was that the police department did not want to admit to turning a blind eye toward a violent domestic situation.
The officers ultimately decided not to arrest anyone, and instead ordered Laundrie and Petito to separate for the night.
Two weeks later Petito disappeared.
Currently, Laundrie is on the run from the law, and to the surprise of many, he has managed to stay one step ahead of the law enforcement agencies who are hot on his trail.
Police say they are certain Laundrie is still alive, and they assure the public that he will be apprehended sometime in the near future.
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