LI Mom To Missing Daughter We Just Need To See You Again

LI Mom To Missing Daughter We Just Need To See You Again BLUE POINT, NY — Gabrielle Petito had been on the road in a camper van with her boyfriend touring national parks since early July, but she has vanished.

Petito would check in when she could, but cell phone service had been spotty and she would often have to stop at shops such as Starbucks to use the Wi-Fi. Her mother, Nichole Schmidt, last spoke with her in the final week of August, and then received a text from her phone a few days later saying that the next stop of her trip was Yellowstone.

Schmidt did not immediately hear back when she responded but chalked it up to the bad cell phone service that is consistent with life out on the road.

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It was not until a few days later that Schmidt started to become concerned because it was too long a period for her daughter not to check in with her family. She started calling the National Parks Service to see if the couple had made reservations, but she could not find out anything.

While the 22-year-old Blue Point native is a free spirit, Schmidt said, there is no possibility she would have gone off alone and not have any contact with her family or friends. Instead, Schmidt described Petito as being “very dependent.”

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“She’s not somebody that could be on her own,” Schmidt said.

After getting the run-around with some law enforcement agencies, Schmidt finally was able to make a missing persons report with a detective at the 5th Precinct in Patchogue on Saturday.

The van she was traveling in was recovered in North Port, Florida, police said in a statement released Monday afternoon. The van was towed from a home in North Port that is possibly owned by the parents of Petito’s boyfriend, Brian Laundrie, whom she had been traveling with, Fox News reported. Police are going through the van to examine it for evidence, the outlet reported.

The North Port Police Department, which is investigating Petito’s disappearance in conjunction with Suffolk police, currently does not have any “definitive information that a crime took place here in North Port,” according to a statement Monday afternoon. “With that said, the circumstances are odd.”

“So, we are actively gathering local details and any evidence to assist in finding needed answers,” the statement concluded.

North Port police spokesman Josh Taylor told Fox News investigators are hopeful Petito is “out there somewhere” and that while it is still a viable option she does not want to communicate, “we have to prepare for something maybe more sinister.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Tampa field office is also assisting the departments in the investigation.

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