- The body of missing YouTuber Gabby Petito has reportedly been found
- Police have confirmed the cause of death as a homicide and are investigating her missing fiancé, Brian Laundrie, as a key person of interest
- One report speculates that Laundrie could face the death penalty if found guilty
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The body of 22-year-old missing social media influencer Gabrielle 'Gabby' Petito has reportedly been found. The FBI confirmed the news on Tuesday with the local coroner's initial report saying it was a homicide.
Her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, was declared a person of interest in the case and reports suggest he declined to cooperate with the police. Police bodycam footage of the couple getting into a heated altercation has deepened suspicions concerning Laundrie.
He's also since been reported missing, News 24 reports.
Allegations of gender-based violence
In August, police in Utah responded to a domestic violence report involving Petito and Laundrie. Bodycam footage shows Petito saying she had been involved in an altercation with Laundrie.
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In the video, Petito admits to slapping Laundrie after an argument. She can also be seen crying and says she struggles with mental health problems. No charges were brought, however the couple were ordered to spend the night apart.
Brian Laundrie could face the death penalty
Brian Laundrie could face severe punishment if authorities bring charges against him in connection with the death of 22-year-old Gabby Petito, Insider reports.
While half of all US states have abolished the death penalty, it remains legal in both Florida, where the murder is suspected to have taken place. For him to be hit with the death penalty, officials must first determine exactly where the crime was committed.
Gabby Petito: Body of missing influencer believed to have been found
Earlier, the case of missing social media influencer Gabby Petito took a tragic turn on Sunday when police found human remains "consistent with the description of Petito".
The 22-year-old had been travelling with her fiancé, Brian Laundrie when she was first reported missing. On 1 September, Laundrie returned to his home in Florida without Petito, police officials say. The pair had embarked on a lengthy road trip through several western states, CNN reports.
Police are working hard to determine whether this discovery could answer questions regarding what happened to the influencer but so far Laundrie has not been named a suspect in the case.
"It is important to note that while Brian is a person of interest in Gabby's disappearance, he is not wanted for a crime," the North Port Police Department said in a statement on 17 September, E! News reports.
Speaking with the publication, Coroner Dr Brent Blue says an autopsy is expected to take place on Tuesday, 21 September. It's hoped photographs, personal identification or DNA evidence will help identify the remains.