Gabby Petito’s anguished family went on "60 Minutes Australia" and pleaded for her fiance to turn himself in as dogs in Florida assisted in the massive search for him last week.
"He went home, he’s hiding. He used her credit card," said Petito’s mother, Nichole Schmidt, according to the interview that aired on Sunday in Australia and was posted on YouTube.
"Either way you look at it, he’s a coward," said her father, Joe Petito.
Gabrielle Petito’s fiance, Brian Laundrie, was named a "person of interest" by the FBI and is wanted on a federal arrest warrant for bank card fraud. He has evaded police since his family says he vanished on Sept. 13.
"Turn your … [expletive] self in now," added her stepfather, Jim Schmidt.
During the interview, Petito’s family took aim at Laundrie’s parents, who have remained quiet since their son returned home without Petito and later mysteriously disappeared himself. On Oct. 7, his father, Chris Laundrie, helped police identify where his son liked to hike.
"I believe they know. I don’t know why they’re doing this to us," Nicole Schmidt said. "I would love to just, face to face ask, why are you doing this? Just tell me the truth. …Their actions don’t show that their son is missing. It shows that they’re just comfortable and they probably know where he is."
Jim Schmidt added: "We were up every day and every night until we found Gabby. Are the people that love him doing the same thing? And why not? Because if they were, maybe he would be found by now."
Last week, the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office used dogs trained to track human remains while searching for Laundrie at the sprawling Carlton Reserve in Florida. Steven Bertolino, an attorney for the Laundrie family, previously said Brian Laundrie is not a wilderness survivalist.
Bertolino has also said the Laundries don’t know the whereabouts of their son and want authorities to find him.
Petito and Laundrie — graduates of Bayport-Blue Point High School — were on a cross-country road trip this summer that they widely documented on social media.
"Her laughter was so infectious, her smile so infectious," Joe Petito recalled during the interview.
Schmidt, of Blue Point, reported her daughter missing to Suffolk County police on Sept. 11 after she stopped hearing from her in late August. She said they would text almost everyday before she went missing.
Petito’s body was found on Sept. 19 in a Wyoming national forest. A Wyoming coroner determined she died of manual strangulation three to four weeks before she was discovered.
"I thought he would take care of her," Schmidt added.
With Darwin Yanes