Newly Released Selfie Shows Gabby Petito 'Documenting' Injuries

Minutes before Moab traffic stop, Petito took a photo of her bruised face
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 8, 2023 1:07 AM CST
Newly Released Selfie Shows Gabby Petito 'Documenting' Injuries
Nicole Schmidt, mother of Gabby Petito, wipes away a tear during a press conference for SB117, a bill advocating for domestic violence protections, at the Capitol in Salt Lake City on Monday, Jan. 30, 2023.   (Ryan Sun/The Deseret News via AP)

Before Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie were stopped by police in Moab, Utah, after a 911 caller reported seeing Laundrie hitting Petito, Petito may have been documenting her injuries. The family of Petito, who two weeks after the traffic stop was killed by her boyfriend, Laundrie, before he took his own life, has released a selfie they say Petito took in the back of the couple's van less than 20 minutes before the Moab traffic stop, TMZ reports. In it, Petito has red marks on her face and a bruised eye.

The police who stopped the van shortly after the photo was taken ultimately let the couple go, even claiming Petito appeared to be the aggressor and Laundrie the victim; Petito's family is now suing the department for wrongful death, and released the selfie as part of that lawsuit. "I believe she knew she was in trouble and that this crossed the line and she took that picture in the back of the van," the family attorney tells People.

"It is totally heartbreaking to see her hurt and scared and in need and to have her concerns ignored the way that it was," the lawyer says. "We believe that if they followed up and investigated those injuries and asked the questions they should have, they would have understood the danger she was in and she would have better understood the danger she was in. We believe she would be alive today if they handled it properly." (More Gabby Petito stories.)

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