The parents of Gabby Petito will receive a copy of the shocking letter Roberta Laundrie wrote to her son Brian Laundrie amid the tragic situation involving Gabby’s death back in 2021. And now, we know more of what was written in the jaw-dropping note — and why it has become so controversial in the first place.
As we’ve been reporting, Roberta has been under the focus of considerable media and legal attention after writing a note to Brian with some very shocking comments. The handwritten letter — in which Roberta counseled her now-deceased son to “burn after you read this” — has been the focal point of a recent court battle involving Gabby’s parents Nicole Schmidt and Joseph Petito.
Now, on Wednesday, a Florida judge ruled Schmidt and Petito will have access to a copy of the letter as part of their lawsuit against the Laundrie family.
As Perezcious readers may recall, the handwritten note appeared to make mention of burying a body. Roberta has contended she wrote the note before the trip on which Brian killed Gabby. However, it was found alongside Brian’s body in the Carlton Reserve in October of 2021, where he died by suicide amid a manhunt for him.
We now know that in the note, Roberta wrote in part:
“I just want you to remember I will always Love you and I know you will always Love me. You are my boy. Nothing can make me stop loving you, nothing will or could ever divide us. No matter what we do, or where we go or what we say — we will always Love each other.”
Shockingly, Brian’s mom went on to add:
“If you’re in jail I will bake a cake with a file in it. If you need to dispose of a body I will show up with a shovel and garbage bags. If you fly to the moon, I will be watching the skies for your re-entry. If you say you hate my guts, I’ll get new guts. Remember that love is a verb not a noun. It’s not a thing, it’s not words, it is actions. Watch people’s actions to know if they love you — not their words.”
“If you need to dispose of a body I will show up with a shovel and garbage bags.”
After Wednesday’s ruling by Judge Danielle Brewer, per CNN and others, Schmidt and Petito will now be granted access to a copy of that note ahead of their upcoming civil trial against the Laundrie family.
Per People, both sides’ lawyers had been arguing in court this week over the admissibility of the note as part of the forthcoming civil suit.
Patrick Reilly, the attorney for the Petitos, claimed the note was written after Gabby’s murder, and thus points to Roberta’s involvement in helping conceal her son from law enforcement. Meanwhile, Laundrie family attorney Matt Luka has argued the note was written before Brian and Gabby’s fateful trip, and has been taken out of context because of what happened during that fateful September 2021 tragedy.
As part of the Laundrie family’s claim the letter had been taken out of context, Roberta previously argued:
“Understand that the letter contains other phases besides those highlighted by Pat Reilly for sensationalism and to bolster his case. … Although I chose words that I thought would be impactful with Brian given our relationship, the letter was in no way related to Gabby. I truly loved my son and simply wanted to convey to him how much he meant to me and how much I loved him.”
Whatever the case may be regarding the actual date the letter was written, Gabby’s family will now have access to it. Obviously, for their side in this emotional and difficult civil suit, that’s a big deal.
After the Petito family’s victory on Wednesday in front of Judge Brewer, Reilly told the media that Gabby’s parents were encouraged by the decision:
“It’s a victory, we’re happy to have it, we’ve fought hard to get it, we’ve been fighting for over a year to get that letter. The whole intent of this is to get answers.”
“There are still many questions that the Petito family has about what the Laundrie family knew, what they did with the knowledge that they knew, and really why they didn’t come forward and say anything. I don’t know if that question will ever get answered, but there’s a lot of questions that the family would like answered if you can get closure at all in a situation like this.”
Meanwhile, per the US Sun, Luka “echoed Roberta’s concerns” the letter “may be taken out of context” considering the circumstances of Gabby’s murder back in 2021. Um… ya think?
We get how the whole, “I love you so much I’d help you bury a body” can be a sweet gallows humor thing between friends or family. But in the context of there actually being a body, of there actually being accusations of Brian’s mom knowing about it and helping him… you have to admit it makes sense to consider it as evidence. Right??
You can see more about Judge Brewer’s decision regarding the letter (below):
For now, the civil suit between the two families is ongoing. The Laundries have filed a motion to dismiss the case against them, and Judge Brewer has indicated she will rule on that motion “at a future date,” per CNN and others.
Wednesday’s development is a major move for the Petito family as they try to find some kind of recourse following Gabby’s still-shocking death.
Reactions, Perezcious readers?
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, help is available. Consider calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233, or text START to 88788, or go to https://www.thehotline.org/.
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, help is available. Consider contacting the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988, by calling, texting, or chatting, or go to 988lifeline.org.
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