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Federal law enforcement focusing on Grand Teton National Park in search for Gabby Petito

Gabby Piteto via FBI.png
The search for Gabby Piteto has led law enforcement to Grand Teton National Park. (Photo: FBI)

MOOSE, Wyo. (KUTV) – Federal law enforcement officials are working with police in northwestern Wyoming to look for Gabby Petito, the missing 22-year-old woman who last told her family that she was with her fiancé Brian Laundrie at Grand Teton National Park in late August.

Police confirmed they are searching the park and are asking anyone who saw the couple here or may have pictures of them to contact the FBI.

Park visitors told 2News on Thursday that they saw a group of police officers conducting what appeared to be a grid search in a field on the east side of the park.

“We noticed there were five or six people in high-vis jackets on walking in a specific line several feet apart looking at the grass,” John Wilhelm, who is visiting the park from out of state said. “Immediately we thought this was related to the situation."

An FBI spokesperson declined to comment on specifics of any searches being conducted in the park.

The FBI posted on Twitter Thursday saying agents are working with the Teton County Sheriff’s Office, the Jackson Police, and the Investigative Services Branch of the National Park Service to investigate Petito’s disappearance.

Petito's family again pleaded publicly to Laundrie and his family to tell investigators what he knows about Petito’s whereabouts.

“Please, tell us where Gabby is located, tell us if we are even looking in the right place. All we want is for Gabby to come home,” family attorney Rick Stafford said.

Police previously named Laundrie a "person of interest" in Petito’s disappearance. Laundrie’s attorney said in a statement that he is not speaking with investigators for now.

“Many people are wondering why Mr. Laundrie would not make a statement or speak with law enforcement in the face of Ms. Petito’s absence. In my experience, intimate partners are often the first person law enforcement focuses their attention on in cases like this and the warning that ‘any statement made will be used against you’ is true, regardless of whether my client had anything to do with Ms. Petito’s disappearance. As such, on advice of counsel Mr. Laundrie is not speaking on this matter,” the statement states.

Investigators are retracing the couple’s cross-country journey, which took them across the western U.S.

Moab Police released body camera video Thursday showing an encounter between the couple and officers after a witness reported seeing the couple physically fighting.

In the body camera video, one of the officers said it appeared Petito was the aggressor, but neither she nor Laundire wanted to press charges. The couple was separated for the night and then resumed their trip together.

Gabby’s family reported she told them that the couple was in Grand Teton National Park in late August.

The FBI has established a tip line for the case at 1-800-CALL-FBI.

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