Raymond Arroyo labeled 'disgusting' for calling Gabby Petito coverage 'distraction'

'This is like a Lifetime movie, an ongoing mini-series for America but I think it's basically a local story, it’s a missing person,' Raymond Arroyo said

                            Raymond Arroyo labeled 'disgusting' for calling Gabby Petito coverage 'distraction'
Raymond Arroyo has called Gabby Petito coverage a distraction (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Conde Nast Publications and Instagram/Gabby Petito)

A Fox News contributor has come under fire for saying that the news coverage of Gabrielle 'Gabby' Petito’s mysterious disappearance is “a huge distraction” from political issues going on in the country. Medical examiners in North Port, Florida, are scheduled to conduct an autopsy on Tuesday, September 21 on a body found in Wyoming, seeking to determine if it is of the 22-year-old "van life" traveler. 

The examination of the remains, which were discovered on Sunday, September 19, in a remote area of Bridger-Teton National Forest, in western Wyoming, will determine whether or not it is in fact Petito and if there was foul play involved in the death. In the meantime, the hunt is still on for Brian Laundrie, Petito’s partner who initially refused to talk to the police and has since gone AWOL.


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The massive public obsession around Petito’s disappearance has been examined by many. The fact that Petito is a good-looking White blonde woman has been attributed to the media’s fascination with the case. America’s obsession with True Crime can also be seen at play. But, has the Gabby Petito news coverage actually come at the cost of the coverage of other important news? That’s what Raymond Arroyo seems to have implied. 

Raymond Arroyo, 51, is an author, journalist, and producer. He is the news director and lead anchor of the Christain conservative channel EWTN News. As per his Fox News bio, he is a contributor on the network and appears regularly on ‘The Ingraham Angle’. 

In addition to his role as a contributor, Arroyo co-hosts ‘Laura & Raymond’ on FNC's on-demand subscription-based streaming service FOX Nation. In the past, he has worked for the Associated Press, The New York Observer and more. His work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, Newsweek, Time Magazine, and The New Yorker.

What did Raymond Arroyo say?

A clip of Arroyo speaking on Fox News was uploaded by TikTok user Morgan S’more on Sunday, September 19, and has since gone viral. In the video, Arroyo claimed that the media was giving more attention to Petito’s case than other matters. “With all that’s happening in the world, what’s happening in our southern border and abroad and at home, I think this entire story is a huge distraction, forgive me,” Arroyo said.

“This is like a Lifetime movie, an ongoing mini-series for America but I think it's basically a local story, it’s a missing person,” he continued, “I hope they get to the bottom of it, but I do worry we’re spending way too much time on this case.”

Arroyo even tweeted this opinion. He wrote, “Though Gabby Petito’s case has gotten a lot of attention, it is important to remember that there are many more missing children and adults who get little coverage,” sharing a link to the FBI’s missing person page. 


One report said that the TikTok clip was viewed more than 960,000 times since it was uploaded, with many expressing anger over Arroyo's claim. “If her story hadn’t blown up the way it did and people just didn’t know, they wouldn’t have found a body,” wrote one user in the comments. “He wouldn’t be saying that if that was his daughter missing!” wrote another person. “It’s bringing light to domestic violence that’s why he’s uncomfortable talking about it,” one user wrote.

On Twitter, one person wrote, “@RaymondArroyo is everything wrong with this country. Individual lives matter. All lives matter. To say the death of someone is a distraction shows a classless lack of empathy. Utterly disgusting!” Another tweet read, “Raymond Arroyo I am so sorry you are being distracted by the missing of a young woman who might not come back alive. I hope the families fear and dread does not bother you too much. All other news is being reported constantly. Gabby Petito is important also.”