Petito’s mother, Nichole Schmidt — as well as her father and stepfather, Joseph Petito and Jim Schmidt — joined “60 Minutes Australia” for an interview published over the weekend to discuss the mystery behind their daughter’s disappearance and killing that has captured the world’s attention.
“I think silence speaks volumes,” Schmidt said of Laundrie’s parents in the interview released Sunday. “I believe they know…if not everything, they know most of the information. I would love to just — face to face — ask, ‘Why are you doing this? Just tell me the truth.'”
Petito’s parents last spoke to their daughter in late August before reporting her missing on Sept. 11. The 22-year-old was on a cross-country road trip with her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, at the time; the pair were traveling in a Ford Transit van that they had converted into a camper.
Laundrie, 23, returned home from Wyoming to North Port, Florida, on Sept. 1 in Petito’s van without her. Petito lived in Laundrie’s home with his parents, Chris and Roberta Laundrie, for a year before they went on their road trip. After Petito was reported missing, Chris and Roberta Laundrie immediately hired an attorney to respond to questions from local police.
“You’d think there’d be some conversations,” Joseph Petito told “60 Minutes Australia.” “If Brian was staying at my house and Gabby returned to my house without him in his vehicle, I’d be on the phone with [his] parents saying, ‘Listen, we’ve got an issue. … We’ve got some stuff to talk about, like, now.'”
He described the situation as “torturous” and “cruel.”