Gabby Petito's Family Speaks Out for the First Time Together on 'Dr. Phil'

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Gabby Petito's family is coming together for the first time to discuss the 22-year-old vlogger's life, legacy and her tragic death. Gabby's remains were found late last month after she had gone missing while on a cross-country road trip with her fiancé, Brian Laundrie.

In the wake of the tragic news, Gabby's father, Joe Petito, and stepmother, Tara Petito, and mother, Nichole Schmidt, and stepfather, Jim Schmidt, all gathered for a two-part interview on Dr. Phil, where they shared the latest developments in their daughter's case as the manhunt for Brian continues.

The family told Dr. Phil McGraw that Brian's disappearance and his unwillingness to cooperate with the authorities after Gabby went missing has been "infuriating."

CBS News previously reported that Brian had been named a person of interest in the Petito case, but authorities weren't able to speak with him. On Sept. 17, an attorney for Brian's family contacted the FBI and said they had not seen him since Sept. 14.

Gabby’s parents slammed Brian's family over their handling of their daughter’s case and their own son’s disappearance. They told Dr. Phil that they had called and texted Brian's parents over and over before reporting their daughter missing on Sept. 11, 10 days after Brian returned to Florida -- where he and Gabby had been living -- without her.

They said they repeatedly called and texted Brian's parents, Chris and Roberta, before reporting their daughter missing but received no response.

Gabby’s parents revealed that at first, they thought they were both missing, until police told them that Brian had returned to Florida in the van he and Gabby had been traveling in.

"One of the texts was 'I’m going to call the police, just letting you know.' No response. A normal parent, when you text someone that they’re going to call the cops because you can’t find your child, they would reply," Gabby's father, Joe, said. "We thought they were both missing at that point in time when we were calling them."

"We didn’t know the van was in Florida when we contacted [them]. I was worried about both of them," her mother, Nichole, added.

When asked if they thought that Brian was in hiding, Gabby’s parents said that they're sure that he is.

"Somewhere off the beaten path somewhere, just thinking he’s not gonna get caught," her stepfather, Jim, said.

Gabby Petito
ASSOCIATED PRESS

And her mother agreed, sharing that Brian prided himself on being able to live off the land.

"I believe he bragged about that, like he’s good at that stuff," she added.

As for any words they have for Brian, Jim simply said: "Turn yourself in." A sentiment the entire family agreed with.

"You’re only making it worse. For us and for himself and for his family," he added. "Let us have some closure. Let us come to an end to this tragic period and just move on and be able to remember Gabby for all the wonderful memories we had with her, and not looking at a TV screen wondering if he's gonna be found."

As for how the family plans to memorialize their daughter, all four of her parents got matching tattoos in Gabby's memory that simply reads, "Let it be," a tattoo their daughter also had written on her arm.

For more of our coverage on Gabby and the search for Brian, see below.

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