TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The mother of Gabby Petito fired back at comments made Tuesday by the Laundrie family’s attorney concerning the death of her daughter.
Attorney Steve Bertolino had issued a statement via text, calling Petito’s death a tragedy but doubled down on her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, being only a person of interest in her death.
“While Brian Laundrie is currently charged with the unauthorized use of a debit card belonging to Gabby, Brian is only considered a person of interest in relation to Gabby Petito’s demise,” Bertolino wrote. “At this time Brian is still missing and when he is located we will address the pending fraud charge against him.”
However, Petito’s mother, Nichole Schmidt, rejected his comment.
“His words are garbage. Keep talking,” she wrote in a text to WFLA’s J.B. Biunno.
The back-and-forth comes after a coroner in Wyoming confirmed Petito’s cause of death to be strangulation and the manner of death to be homicide.
At this time, the coroner said Petito was probably killed three to four weeks before she was found.
According to the Petito family attorney, no other statements will be made by the victim’s family until they bring her remains home.
North Port residents were devastated to learn more details surrounding Petito’s death. Sandra Vaughn said her heart sank at learning the news. She visited Gabby’s memorial Monday and has been following her story closely.
“Gabby’s parents, I am so, so sorry,” Vaughn said. “My heart breaks for you. My heart really breaks for you, and I hope that you can find some kind of peace somewhere, somehow.”