Brian Laundrie “forced Gabby Petito to say she was his fiancée” and acted “strangely” at the store “hours before her death”


BRIAN Laundrie “prompted” Gabby Petito to say she was engaged in a “strange” encounter at an Idaho ice cream shop shortly before her death, a store worker claimed.

Sunny Mason, who works at Victor Emporium, just 30 miles from Grand Teton National Park, says she believes Gabby, 22, and Brian, 23, stopped by her store on August 25 or 26.


Brian allegedly “tricked” Gabby into telling a store employee that she was engagedCredit: Social networks – Refer to source
Sunny Mason said the meeting happened on August 25 or 26.


Sunny Mason said the meeting happened on August 25 or 26Credit: YouTube

August 25 is the date Gabby uploaded what would be her last Instagram post and last faced her mother. August 26 is the day before witnesses claimed to have seen Brian screaming at waiters at a Wyoming restaurant as Gabby stood nearby in tears.

During Mason’s alleged meeting with the couple, she said she remembered bonding with Gabby over the flower tattoo on the vlogger’s left arm.


She says Gabby told her that she and her partner were on a trip to US national parks, with Yellowstone being their next stop.

But it was Brian’s “weird” behavior that really stood out, Mason said.

“I felt like he almost made her tell me she was engaged,” Mason recalled to local media. “We have a lot of engaged couples and it doesn’t usually turn out that way.

“It was just a little weird,” she continued, “like it was a reminder for her to be like,” Ooh look, we’re engaged.

“It was like he felt offended because she wasn’t talking about her engagement or she wasn’t horny [about it]. “

Read our Gabby Petito live blog for the latest news and updates …

Other store owners and employees have previously claimed to have interacted with the couple in the area around the same time as Mason.

Last month, the owner of Rustic Row in Victor, Idaho, said the couple also stopped by their store on August 25 or 26.

“They told me they were from Florida,” said the owner, who has not been named. “They had just gone to Teton Park and they said they were interested in going to Yellowstone and I told them they could go to the west entrance.”

The store owner added: “They looked happy and when they left she screamed from the door that they were engaged and then I said my congratulations.”


The next day, the same day Brian was allegedly spotted screaming at a restaurant in Wyoming, Gabby’s mother Nichole Schmidt said she received a “strange” text from her daughter’s phone.

He was like, “Can you help Stan, I keep getting his voicemails and missed calls.”

Schmidt, however, said she did not believe Gabby sent the “weird” text because Stan is Gabby’s grandfather whom she does not refer to by first name.

Days later, on September 1, Laundrie then returned home to North Port Florida in the couple’s converted van, but there was no sign of Gabby.

Laundrie offered no explanation for Gabby’s whereabouts and immediately hired a lawyer.

She was eventually reported missing by her mother on September 11.

Gabby’s remains were later found at a campsite near Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on September 19.

The manner in which Gabby died was considered homicide and the coroner revealed on Tuesday that she had been strangled to death by “human force” otherwise known as strangulation.

She had also been left in the wild for three to four weeks, coroners said.

This places his time of death towards the end of August, between August 25 and 29.


Officials have so far refused to speculate who they believe killed Gabby. They also say they don’t know if the killer “used hands or an instrument” to strangle her to death.

Brian has not yet been named a suspect in the case but is considered a person of interest.

He is also wanted by police for suspected bank fraud after investigators said he used a credit card believed to have belonged to Gabby in late August, accumulating charges amounting to $ 1,000.

A tireless four-week search for Brian has so far yielded no concrete leads.

Law enforcement focused their efforts on the Carlton Reservation, while TV star Dog the Bounty Hunter conducted his own research in Fort De Soto Park, where Brian had camped with his parents before visiting. disappear.

Gabby’s murder investigation continues.

Victor Emporium is pictured above


Victor Emporium is pictured aboveCredit: Google
Gabby and Brian were traveling across the country to visit United States National Parks


Gabby and Brian were traveling across the country to visit United States National ParksCredit: social media – Refer to source
Gabby's cause of death was strangulation


Gabby’s cause of death was strangulationCredit: City of Moab Police Department
Gabby Petito’s police body camera video showed “so many signs of an abusive relationship,” says boss of domestic violence charity

Gabby Petito timeline

Gabby Petito, 22, was last seen on August 24, leaving a Utah hotel. Here is a timeline of Gabby Petito’s disappearance:

  • June 2021 – Gabby Petito and her fiancé Brian Laundrie have embarked on a journey through the United States.
  • 4th July – Gabby posts pictures of herself barefoot in Gove County, Kansas.
  • July 8 – Gabby posts photos of herself in Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado.
  • July 18 – Gabby and Brian post photos of themselves in Zion National Park, Utah.
  • 12 august – Body camera footage was released in September showing an encounter Brian and Gabby had with police in Utah. Police confirmed that no serious injuries had been reported.
  • August 19 – Gabby and Brian are posting a video on their YouTube channel about their trip.
  • 24 august – Gabby is seen leaving a hotel in Salt Lake City, Utah.
  • August 25 – Gabby Facetime her mother, Nichole Schmidt, for the last time. In a subsequent police report, Schmidt said her conversations with her daughter revealed “growing tension” between her and Brian.
  • 25 august – Gabby also posts her latest Instagram. No location is indicated.
  • August 27 – Gabby is seen for what is believed to be the last time. Witnesses claim to see Brian in an explosive argument with restaurant staff in Jackson Hole, leaving Gabby in tears.
  • August 27 – Four hours later, travel bloggers driving through Grand Teton National Park drive past the couple’s “abandoned” van on a dirt road.
  • September 1st – Brian goes home to Florida without Gabby.
  • September 11th – Gabby’s parents report her disappearance to Suffolk County Police.
  • September 14 – Brian’s family release a statement saying he has retained a lawyer and will not cooperate with investigators.
  • September 14 – Brian was reportedly last seen by his family. He reportedly told them he was going to hike the Cartlon Preserve but did not return.
  • September 15th – North Port Florida Police say Brian is a person of interest in the case. He is not charged with any crime.
  • September 16 – Utah Police are releasing body camera footage of the police encounter with Brian and Gabby.
  • September 17 – Brian’s parents say they haven’t seen their son for a few days and report his missing.
  • September 18 – Police say they were looking for Brian on the Carlton reservation in Florida. The police say they haven’t found anything.
  • September 19 – Wyoming officials say they found a body in Grand Teton National Park. The FBI announces that the body is Gabby’s, but a full forensic identification must first be completed to confirm.
  • September 20 – Police execute a search warrant at Laundrie’s home, seizing his silver Mustang and a hard drive that may contain “relevant evidence to prove a crime has been committed.”
  • September 21 – Authorities say they will perform an autopsy on the remains found in Wyoming to confirm whether or not they belong to Gabby. Police have also resumed their search for the laundromat, this time on the Venice side of the Carlton reserve.
  • September 21 – The FBI announced that the body found in Wyoming was Gabby’s. The cause of death has not yet been revealed.
  • September 21 – The Teton County Coroner’s Office said Gabby’s official cause of death was still pending, but the original mode of death was homicide.
  • September 22 – Police continue to search the Carlton reservation for a trace of Laundrie, but give no leads. A specialized diving team is called in to assist in the hunt.
  • September 23 – Authorities have announced that a federal arrest warrant has been issued for Brian.
  • September 26 – Gabby’s funeral was held in Long Island, New York.
  • 12 october: Gabby’s autopsy results have been released. Teton County Coroner Dr Brent Blue confirmed Gabby died from strangulation.

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