New dispatch audio shows that police in Utah who pulled over Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito knew before they stop that he had allegedly hit her and they may have violated protocol when they did not arrest him.
The audio of the dispatch call contradicts reports from officers in Moab City, Utah, they were unaware of a call from a person who said they had witnessed Laundrie slapping Petito.
"RP (reporting party) states seeing a male hit a female, domestic," the dispatcher told police at around 4.38 pm local time, according to the audio obtained by Fox News 13, KSTU in Salt Lake City, Utah.
'He got into a white Ford Transit van, has a black ladder on the back, Florida plate," the dispatcher tells officers.
One of the officers asks for additional information regarding the witness and is told that Petito had allegedly been hit.
"Phone number is [redacted], name’s [redacted],' the dispatcher responds at 4:42 p.m. 'I’m not sure [inaudible], but the female who got hit, they both, the male and the female, both got into the van and headed north," the dispatcher said.
The Moab Police Department announced last week it would conduct an investigation into the handling of the incident in which they determined that Petito was the aggressor and had hit Laundrie, age 23.
The dispute took place about a month before the 22-year-old Long Island resident, of the hamlet of Blue Point, was found dead in Wyoming.
According to Utah law, officers are required to make an arrest or issue a ticket if they believe domestic violence has taken place.
But, instead of doing either, they separate the two for the evening, putting Laundrie, of North Port, Florida, in Sarasota County, in a hotel room for the night, a bodycam video of the incident shows.
While talking with police in a more than hourlong video, a distraught and crying Gabby tells officers she has OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) and the two had gotten into a fight after he locked the van to prevent her from getting back inside.
Police say they then discovered that Petito had attacked Brian when he would not return her cell phone and scratched him in the face and arms during the fight.
Two weeks after the video was shot, Petito stopped communicating with her family and she was reported missing by her mother on Sunday, Sept. 11.
Petito's body was found on Sunday, Sept. 19, in the Grand Teton National Park, in Wyoming. An autopsy ruled the manner of death as a homicide.
In the meantime, Laundrie returned home to Florida on Wednesday, Sept. 1, in Petito's van, without her and refused to talk with police.
He went missing and hasn't been seen since Tuesday, Sept. 13 when he said he was going hiking in a nearby nature reserve.
Since then, police are continuing a massive manhunt at the reserve for Laundrie, who is listed as a person of interest in the homicide of Petito and is wanted on a federal arrest warrant for fraudulent credit card use.
Currently, rewards totaling $30,000 are being offered for information leading to his whereabouts.
The FBI is asking the public for tips in their search for Laundrie and ask anyone with information to call 1-800-CALL FBI or submit tips at tips.fbi.gov.
This continues to be a developing story. Check back to Daily Voice for updates.
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