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Brian Laundrie was the only person involved in the death of Gabby Petito, FBI says, as investigation comes to a close

Petito and Laundrie were stopped outside Arches National Park by Moab police after a dispute on Aug. 12.

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) A poster on a tree near the Moonflower Community Co-op in Moab, where Kylen Schulte used to work, on Friday, Sept. 17, 2021. Schulte was found murdered along with her wife, Crystal Turner, in August in the mountains outside Moab. The FBI has ruled out any connection between their case and the one involving Gabby Petito.

The FBI has concluded that Brian Laundrie was the only person involved in the death of his fiance Gabrielle “Gabby” Petito, according to a news release Friday.

Petito and Laundrie had been on a cross-country trip before Petito was reported missing on Sept. 11 in a case that drew national attention. Her disappearance came 10 days after Laundrie returned to his home in Florida.

“All logical investigative steps have been concluded in this case,” FBI Denver Division Special Agent in Charge Michael Schneider said in a statement. “The investigation did not identify any other individuals other than Brian Laundrie directly involved in the tragic death of Gabby Petito.”

Investigators met with Petito’s family in Tampa Bay, Florida, to tell them that the case will “be closed in the near future,” according to the release.

“The FBI’s primary focus throughout the investigation was to bring justice to Gabby and her family,” Schneider said.

The announcement comes a day after the FBI said that Petito and Laundrie were not involved in the slaying of a newlywed couple in Moab in late August.

Petito and Laundrie had been stopped by police in Moab due to a dispute on Aug. 12, shortly before Kylen Schulte and Crystal Turner were found dead Aug. 28. There was some early speculation that the two cases might be connected based on the timing.

Initially, the Grand County Sheriff’s office ruled out a link between the cases on Sept. 17, days before Petito was found dead near Grand Teton National Park. However, the FBI continued to look into a possible relation.

Now, based on “electronic transmission evidence,” the FBI and Florida investigators have concluded that Petito and Laundrie were not involved in the deaths of Schulte and Turner, according to a Thursday news release from the Grand County Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff’s office stated it has identified persons of interest in the deaths of Schulte and Turner, but not suspects. The FBI is now assisting Grand County with that investigation, as well. Anyone with further information is asked to contact the sheriff’s office at (435) 259-8115 or (435) 259-1397.

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