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Gabby Petito died of strangulation, coroner says

The Teton County coroner said Gabby Petito (R) died of strangulation. Police were still searching for her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie (L), a month after he was reported missing. File Photo courtesy of North Port Police/Twitter
The Teton County coroner said Gabby Petito (R) died of strangulation. Police were still searching for her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie (L), a month after he was reported missing. File Photo courtesy of North Port Police/Twitter

Oct. 12 (UPI) -- A Wyoming coroner confirmed Tuesday that Gabrielle "Gabby" Petito died from strangulation, as officials near a full month of searching for her missing boyfriend, Brian Laundrie.

Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue declined to offer further details about Petito's death, NBC News reported.

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While he said her body was found outside, he didn't specify whether her remains were buried or exposed in Grand Teton National Park, where she was found, WFLA-TV in Tampa, Fla., reported.

"All I can really comment on is that her body was outside in the wilderness for three to four weeks," Blue said.

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He also said she was not pregnant at the time of her death.

Officials found Petito's body Sept. 19, little more than a week after her parents reported her missing during a cross-country road trip with Laundrie.

Her family said they last heard from her in late August while she was traveling with Laundrie. Petito, 22, had been living with Laundrie and his parents in North Port, Fla., when they set out on the trip. Authorities said Petito was not with Laundrie when he returned to their Florida home Sept. 1.

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Laundrie, a "person of interest" in the criminal investigation, according to North Port Police, has been missing since Sept. 13, when his family said he went for a hike in Carlton Reserve in Florida and never returned. Police said that prior to his disappearance Laundrie had not been cooperative with investigators.

Authorities searched the wildlife refuge for weeks seeking signs of Laundrie. A federal court in Wyoming issued an arrest warrant for him, accusing him of using Petito's credit cards after her death.

The couple had been in a physical fight in Moab, Utah, about two weeks before Petito disappeared in Wyoming, but there were no arrests, according to a police report.

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