'No service in Yosemite': Gabby Petito's mom claims last text may not have been sent by her
The mystery around Long Island native Gabby Petito's disappearance last month while she was on a cross country trip with her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie, seems nowhere close to unfolding. New information in the case reveals Petito's last text sent to her mother before the disappearance. According to reports, the last text message from Gabby Petito’s phone to her mom said that she didn’t have phone service in Yosemite National Park. The text was sent two days before her van emerged in Florida, according to her mother.
Nichole Schmidt said on Wednesday, September 15 that she received the message from her daughter’s phone on August 30. "No service in Yosemite, " the message read. However, Schmidt noted that she doesn’t believe her daughter was behind the text. "I do not believe the text on August 30th was from my daughter." Elaborating on her doubts, Schmidt said, "The van was in Florida on the first [of September]. I think I can do the math." Schmidt refused to comment on who she thinks was the text from or if she received any other unusual messages.
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Earlier, Moab police reported that they responded to an "incident" involving the 22-year-old and her boyfriend Brian Laundrie on August 12, around two weeks before she was last heard. However, authorities did not give much detail related to that incident at the time. The police reports have now revealed that Petito and her boyfriend scuffled near a Utah national park last month, and Petito allegedly told police that tension between the two "had been building over the last few days". Petito also told cops that she feared her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie, was going to drive off and leave her behind.
According to the police report, Petito and Laundrie told cops in Moab, Utah, that they had been traveling together for months and that the "emotional strain between them" had led to an "increased number of arguments", during the August 12 incident. The couple reportedly got into an argument near a local convenience store, and Petito attempted to slap Laundrie, who, in turn, locked her out of the van. Police Officer Daniel Scott Robbins wrote in the report, "I approached the vehicle and saw the only occupants being Gabrielle and Brian. Gabrielle, who was in the passenger east, was crying uncontrollably." He further added, "Brian said Gabrielle, thinking he was going to leave her in Moab without a ride, went to slap him. As Gabrielle started to swing, Brian pushed her away to avoided the slap. As a result Gabrielle, off-balance, but still caught Brian’s face with some fingers causing minor visible scratches." Neither Petito nor Laundrie wanted to press charges, and police said that they "then determined the most appropriate course of action would be to help separate the parties for the night so they could reset their mental states without interference from one another." Petito remained in the van while officers found a hotel room for Laundrie for the night. Petito and Laundrie also told cops they both suffered from an undisclosed disorder. Laundrie told the officer that "neither he nor Gabrielle take medication."
Florida native, Gabby Petito was on a cross country trip to Oregon with her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie when she lost contact with family and stopped posting to social media pages all of a sudden. Petito's last known location is believed to be in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming in late August, while Laundrie returned his home to North Port, Florida on September 1 in the white Ford Transit van the couple was using. Petito was reported missing to the Suffolk County Police Department by her family on September 11.