LISTEN: 911 call sheds new light on incident before Gabby Petito disappeared


(WJW/KDVR) – A 911 call is shedding new light on a “domestic dispute” that happened before Gabby Petito‘s disappearance.

In a recording first obtained by FOX News, a person tells the dispatcher that he saw a man “slapping the girl.”

The incident happened Aug. 12 in Moab, Utah, while Gabby Petito and her boyfriend Brian Laundrie were on their road trip. A fight between the couple reportedly turned physical outside a Moab grocery store. Someone called the police, who caught up with the couple’s van near the entrance to Arches National Park. Officers said they spotted the van going 45 mph in a 15 mph zone.

Last week, the police department released body camera footage of that stop. Petito appeared emotionally distraught and told officers that the two had been arguing during the day. While the 911 caller reported a man hitting a woman, Petito did not report that Laundrie struck her during the traffic stop, according to police.

Laundrie, who had visible marks on his face, told police that Petito had “gone into a manic state” after thinking that he was “going to leave her in Moab without a ride” and slapped him repeatedly before scratching him when he tried to push her away.

The incident happened just weeks before Petito was reported missing.

On Sunday, authorities announced they found remains in Wyoming believed to be those of the 22-year-old.

A search continues for Brian Laundrie, 23, who authorities said is a person of interest in the case.

The FBI was seen at his family’s Florida home Monday.

FBI Denver assisting with investigation

FBI Denver is assisting in the investigation but did not provide any new information Monday.

Former FBI profiler Pete Klismet said it’s likely the Denver bureau sent specialists from Colorado to Wyoming to assist in processing the scene where the remains were discovered.

“In all probability, they will have an evidence recovery team up there. They’ll search the scene where the body was found for any indication of evidence and spread their wings out considerably, probably 50 yards, to see if there is any additional evidence there,” Klismet said.

The coroner is expected to perform the autopsy Tuesday. Klismet said understanding how Petito died will shape the investigation moving forward.

“We don’t know if we’re dealing with a kidnapping, we don’t know if we’re dealing with a murder,” Klismet said.

He said once a cause and manner of death is determined, investigators will likely look back at the couple’s previous stops on their trip for any evidence, including time spent in Colorado.

The pair stopped at a pizza restaurant near Colorado Springs in July. The restaurant Slice420 posted that information on Facebook last week before the remains were found.

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