Elizabeth Smart Shares "Heartbreaking" Insight Into Gabby Petito's Case After "Being on the Other Side"
Elizabeth Smart shares her heartfelt opinion on Gabby Petito's death.
On Wednesday October 13th, Elizabeth was on Facebook Watch's Red Table Talk, where the 33-year-old kidnap survivor shared with co-hosts Jada Pinkett Smith and Adrienne Banfield-Norris how she feels in situations like Gabby's . Gabby was confirmed dead on September 21 after her remains were found after a road trip with her fiancé Brian Laundrie.
"Especially in Gabby's case - I mean, I was alive and came home and hers tragically didn't end like that," Elizabeth said. "But knowing what it's like to be on the other side, and possibly what possibly happened and what could have led to her final moments, and probably understanding a lot of what she was feeling is heartbreaking."
When Jada asked if she always had hope of salvation, Elizabeth replied with a smile, “I always wanted to be saved. I don't know if I always had hope. Elizabeth was abducted from her Utah home in June 2002 at the age of 14 before being returned to her family nine months later.
True Crime: Kidnapping Survivors
She went on to say that her parents have since told her that the worst part of their ordeal for her was "not knowing if I was alive and out there or if I was dead".
Elizabeth continued, “Indeed, when I was taken to the mountains on the first night I was kidnapped, I asked him if he would rape and kill me, and if he did, he could please to do? pretty close to my house. Because it was important to me that my parents find my body and know that I didn't run away. When I think of Gabby Petito, when I think of all these other victims, I feel like they still deserve just as much to be found so that their stories will end too. "
Renee Jones Schneider / Star Tribune via AP
On Tuesday, October 12, officials confirmed that Gabby, whose remains were found in Bridger-Teton National Forest, Wyoming, had died of strangulation and that her death was estimated to have occurred three to four weeks before her body was discovered.
The 22-year-old YouTuber's parents first reported her missing on September 11th after Brian returned from her road trip to Florida alone. Police later named Brian a person of interest in the case, and his parents told police they hadn't seen him since September 14.
On September 23, a federal warrant was issued for Brian after a federal grand jury charged him with illicit use of a debit card after her death. Authorities did not name him as a suspect in Gabby's death.
For free, confidential assistance, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 or visit rainn.org.
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