Months after his death by suicide, Brian Laundrie‘s confession to killing fiancée Gabby Petito has been revealed in his own words, as the contents of his notebook recovered in October 2021 were released by Fox News on Friday, June 24.
“I ended her life,” he wrote, claiming that she had been injuring in a fall. “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.” The couple, who were on a cross-country road trip, were last seen together camping near Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park in late August 2021.
Gabby’s body was found buried near their dispersed campsite on Sept. 19, 2021, and the Teton County Coroner’s office determined that she had died from manual strangulation. Their autopsy also revealed that she had been dead three to four weeks before her remains were discovered.
Brian’s notebook was recovered inside of his backpack, which was discovered in Florida’s Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park on Oct. 20, 2021. His remains were found the following day. A Sarasota County Medical Examiner’s report released on February 14, 2022, stated he died from a gunshot wound to the head.
In Brian’s notebook entry, he claimed Gabby was injured while they were returning to their camp, and he didn’t know how to help her. “Rushing back to our car trying to cross the streams of Spread Creek before it got too dark to see, too cold. I hear a splash and a scream. I could barely see, 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. Brian added that she was “soaking wet” and the temperature “had dropped to freezing.”
“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,” Brian continued.
“I don’t know the extent of Gabby’s injurys (sic). Only that she was in extreme pain. I ended her life, I thought it was merciful … But from the moment I decided, took away her pain, I knew I couldn’t go on without her,” he added.
Brian then wrote, “I am ending my life not because of a fear of punishment, but rather because I can’t stand to live another day without her. I’ve lost out whole future together, every moment we could have cherished,” adding, “I’m sorry for everyone’s loss. Please do not make life harder for my family, they lost a son and a daughter. The most wonderful girl in the world. Gabby, I’m sorry.”
If you or someone you know is in emotional distress or considering suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).