Pages from Brian Laundrie’s notebook released; detail murder of Gabby Petito, say it was an act of mercy

Details contained in the waterlogged notebook belonging to Brian Laundrie who killed his girlfriend Gabrielle “Gabby” Petito during a cross-country journey last year provide a bizarre and perhaps final glimpse into the mystery of what led to the death of the 22-year-old whose body was abandoned in a remote area of Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park.

It was a story that captivated the nation when Petito suddenly disappeared, leading to immediate suspicion of Laundrie after he returned to Florida alone in the white van that the couple used during their tour of some of the most scenic areas of the country.

Prior to the discovery of her body, Laundrie himself vanished, setting off a massive manhunt before his own corpse would be discovered in the vast Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park after he killed himself with a self-inflicted gunshot to the head.

Among his belongings was the notebook which was described by the FBI as containing “written statements by Mr. Laundrie claiming responsibility for Ms. Petito’s death” and now for the first time, his final notes have been released publicly, a confession that the 23-year-old depicted as a mercy killing, claiming that he strangled her after an “unexpected tragedy” near the Spread Creek Dispersed Camping Area in the Bridger-Teton National Forest.

“I couldn’t find her for a moment, shouted her name. I found her breathing heavily gasping my name, she was freezing cold,” he wrote, according to Fox News Digital which first reported details of the notebook. “When I pulled Gabby out of the water she couldn’t tell me what hurt. She had a small bump on her forehead that eventually got larger. Her feet hurt, her wrist hurt but she was freezing, shaking violently, while carrying her she continually made sounds of pain, laying next to her she said little lapsing between violent shakes, gasping in pain, begging for an end to her pain.”

‘I don’t know the extent of Gabby’s injuries, only that she was in extreme pain,” Laundrie wrote. “I ended her life. I thought it was merciful, that it is what she wanted, but I see now all the mistakes I made. I panicked. I was in shock.”

(Image: Screengrab/The Daily Mail)

He claimed that he acted to murder her after she had been injured in a fall, “From the moment I decided, took away her pain, I knew I couldn’t go on without her.”

(Video: FOX 13 Tampa Bay)

Criminal profiler and psychotherapist John Kelly spoke with Fox News Digital about Laundrie’s confession.

“He tiptoed around the confession. He wanted to serve it up as a mercy killing,” he said. “That’s the thing that is bugging me more than anything.”

In a macabre flourish, Laundrie wrote, “I have killed myself by this creek in the hopes that animals may tear me apart. That may make some of her family happy.”

(Image: Screengrab/The Daily Mail)

He got his wish, at least according to the autopsy report which said that his remains showed signs of “gnawing and chewing” from “post-mortem scavenging/carnivore activity.”

“These areas are consistent with carnivores and/or omnivores including canines such as feral dogs and coyotes along with rodents and raccoons,” the report said.

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Chris Donaldson


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