FIRST ON FOX: One of the last times Gabby Petito was seen alive involved an explosive argument between Brian Laundrie and waiters at a Jackson Hole restaurant, according to a New Orleans couple who said they witnessed the feud.
“I’m having chills right now,” Nina Celie Angelo told Fox News Digital on Wednesday. “It’s crazy because it wasn’t just like we passed them on the street – it was an incident in its own right.”
Angelo said she and her boyfriend, Matthew England, were in town for a wedding in late August. They had been out for lunch at the Merry Piglets, a Tex-Mex restaurant, between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. on August 27, when they said a hectic laundromat had started arguing with a waitress. Four and a half hours later, a couple of travel bloggers passed Petito’s van at a campsite north of town.
In an Instagram post on Wednesday, the restaurant confirmed the two were there.
“Yes, we can confirm that Gabby and Brian were at Merry Piglets… We have already informed the FBI and they know about it. We let them do their job and we respect Gabby’s family and have nothing more to comment on. “said the restaurant.
Angelo, a photographer, said she couldn’t overhear the conversation but believed Laundrie was arguing with the staff about the bill or the money. She described his body language as “aggressive” and said he left and returned about four times.
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At one point, Petito walked in and apologized for Laundrie’s behavior, Angelo said.
A restaurant manager told Fox News the business was “very busy during the summer” and had no recollection of the incident. Local police and the sheriff’s department reported the questions to the FBI, who declined to comment.
Angelo, who posted a detailed account of the scene on her Instagram, said she didn’t think much about the incident at first, and when they returned home to New Orleans, Hurricane Ida took over. hit and turned their lives upside down.
But after the Utah Police body camera video was released last week, her boyfriend, England, a financial advisor, made the connection and realized the couple arguing was Petito. and Laundrie.
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“He said, ‘Nina, that was the couple arguing at the restaurant,’” Angelo said. “And it stopped me in my tracks. I felt like the blood had left my body. I was like, ‘Oh my God, I completely forgot about this incident.'”
England told Fox News it had reported the incident to the FBI and that Petito appeared “visibly upset” with Laundrie as he stalked staff at the Merry Piglets Tex-Mex restaurant.
The incident occurred about two weeks after Fox News Digital was the first to report that a witness called 911 about a confrontation between Petito and Laundrie in Moab, Utah. Angelo and England said the body camera video of the police response matched Petito and Laundrie’s mannerisms and body language they witnessed firsthand. Laundrie was also wearing clothes that England said they recognized in the video and “looked like she had lived in a van for a little while”.
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“I’ve spent the last three or four days racking my brains,” he told Fox News Wednesday. “And I woke up this morning and I went on Facebook, and there was this video with the police on it right away. It was the couple.”
Then it clicked.
“I would bet $ 10 million, I’m 1000% sure it was him and it was her,” he said.
England also provided a credit card statement showing he spent $ 60.88 at the restaurant on August 27.
Angelo said it didn’t look like Laundrie was on drugs and “wasn’t screaming”. But he behaved aggressively with the restaurant staff, a waitress, a hostess and the manager – all women.
August 27 is roughly the date that Petito last made contact with his friends and family. On September 1, Laundrie would have arrived at her parents’ home in Florida without her, driving her van.
The FBI said his remains were discovered Sunday at a campsite north of Jackson Hole.