Nearly two years after Gabby Petito was bludgeoned and strangled to death by her fiance, a chilling photo has emerged showing bloody bruises on the Long Island native's face.
The photo taken by Gabby Petito, 22, weeks before her death, showed visible bruises around her eye and nose. The image was released by the victim’s family attorney as part of their wrongful death suit against the Moab Police Department.
In a statement, attorneys said that the image was reportedly taken on August 12, 2021, moments before the Moab Police Department stopped Petito and her fiance for questioning during a cross-country trip after they received an alert about a domestic violence incident.
The Moab Police Department, who spoke to the couple, reportedly let the fiancee off with a minor warning despite seeing visible bruises on Petito, who was killed three weeks after the incident on August 28, 2021.
Shortly after the emergence of the photo, social media users reacting to the appalling image have expressed grief and heartbreak over the plight of the slain victim, with one person commenting "Breaks my heart."
Gabby Petito’s family says the photo indicates the Moab Police Department's failure to protect their daughter
Attorneys for Gabby Petito’s family have released a shocking image from the victim's cellphone that showed her face covered in bruises just days before her fiance beat her to death during a cross-country trip.
The victim’s family allege that the photo was taken on the same day the couple was stopped by the Moab Police Department after they received a call about a domestic violence incident but failed to take appropriate action despite Petito pointing at the bruises. In a statement, the attorneys said:
“Gabby took a photograph of her injury, which shows blood across her nose and left eye. Gabby pointed out the injury to Officer Pratt, but he ignored her and did nothing more to investigate or document the injury.”
The image has dismayed several people online after police failed to do their due diligence in protecting a victim of domestic violence. Popular pop culture podcast host and documentarian Kate Casey commented on the image and said:
“Heartbroken seeing the photo of #GabbyPetito and wondering if her life would have been saved if officers had paid attention to the visible bruises and scrapes on her face.”
Another user, Jennifer Coffindaffer, echoed the statement and said:
“I am so sad to see this. There is no doubt #gabbypetito suffered domestic violence at the hands #brianlaundrie that ultimately resulted in her death, but for those who wondered what happened in Moab, Gabby's face and words said it all I'm so sorry, #gabby!”
Days after the police stop, Gabby Petito was killed by her fiance Brian Laundrie, who concealed her remains which were found on September 18, 2021. The Moab Police Department has since taken accountability for failing to protect the victim.
Shortly after Laundrie returned home without his fiance on September 1, 2021, he went on the run from authorities but was found with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head on October 20, 2021.