The search warrant, which Insider reviewed, was signed by a Florida judge on Friday, the same day Laundrie, a person of interest in Petito’s missing person’s case went missing himself, and two days before authorities announced they had found a body near Grand Teton National Park that could be Petito’s remains.
The final text Gabby Petito’s mother, Nichole Schmidt, received from her daughter’s phone before the 22-year-old went missing was “odd,” and left Schmidt feeling “concerned,” according to a Florida search warrant for a hard drive belonging to Brian Laundrie, Petito’s fiancé.
Petito disappeared during a cross-country road trip with Laundrie, and was reported missing on September 11, by her mother after she hadn’t heard from Gabby since late August.
The final text message Schmidt received from Petito’s phone arrived on August 27, according to the search warrant.
The discovery of the body and an impending Tuesday autopsy may begin to provide answers in the case that has captivated the nation.
The text read: “Can you help Stan, I just keep getting his voicemails and missed calls.”
According to the warrant, Stan is the name of Petito’s grandfather, but Schmidt told authorities that her daughter never called him “Stan.” The message left Schmidt concerned that something had happened to her daughter, the warrant said.
The message is the last known communication anyone had with Petito, and following the exchange, her cellphone ceased being operational and the young van-life influencer stopped posting on social media, the warrant said. Petito’s family said that was abnormal behavior and they became even more concerned about her wellbeing.Petito’s cellphone had been turned off for approximately 15 days as of Friday, according to the warrant.
While executing a search warrant of the couple’s van on September 14, authorities discovered an external hard drive potentially belonging to Laundrie. According to the warrant, law enforcement believes the drive may consist of information that could aid in solving the case. Friday’s warrant was issued to search the drive. The warrant also revealed that during the couple’s months-long road trip, Petito had “many talks” with her mother that suggested tension between Petito and Laundrie was escalating.