Gabby Petito’s father posted a picture of his daughter on Twitter on Sunday night with the caption, “He touched the world.”
It was no exaggeration. Petito’s disappearance has captivated a public grieving for his family and anxious for answers in what has become a highly publicized affair. The 22-year-old went missing during a cross-country expedition with her fiancé, Brian Laundry, 23. Her family last heard on August 30, two days before she returned home without her laundry.
Police announced on Sunday Human remains believed to belong to Petito Was discovered in Wyoming. He describes Laundry, who has now disguised himself as a “person of interest”.
Gabby Petito Timeline:From Road Trip With Brian Laundry to Active Criminal Investigation
petito case It has received immense media attention and public scrutiny, but gender violence experts say coverage and conversations lack context on the broader dynamics that make violence against women a widespread social problem.
Bodycam footage and 911 calls from before Pettito’s death have raised questions about the possible domestic violence issues between pairs. One in 3 women have experienced intimate partner violence, According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than half of female murder victims in the US are killed by a current or former male intimate partner.
“When you see it as just one dramatic, isolated case, you miss the bigger picture,” said Kirsten Stewart, director of public policy and advocacy at the nonprofit Futures Without Violence. “On average, three women a day die from domestic violence in this country and we are not doing enough to deal with it.”
Domestic violence is a preventable and widespread public health problem that cuts across race, age, income, sexual orientation, religion and gender in terms of both victims and perpetrators. Experts say that individual instances of intimate partner violence – particularly when it involves a celebrity or when that violence becomes fatal to a white victim – deserve public attention.
Rarely focused on addressing critical questions about the ubiquity of gender violence, the power dynamics driving it, and harmful stereotypes about who the victims are, how they behave and the best ways to help them goes.
“I guess what we can ask ourselves is, why does this keep happening?” Kelly R. Lynch, an associate professor with joint appointments in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Texas at San Antonio and the College of Health, Community and Policy. “We treat each of these stories as these one-off tragedies. … Then we wait for the next story to happen.”
‘How scared she was is a bigger sign than any scratch on her face’
A video released by the Moab Police Department shows an officer pulled over the couple’s van on August 12 when it was seen speeding and hitting a curb near the entrance to Arches National Park in Utah.
Experts say bodycam footage is rife with red flags. Laundry is seen calm, laughing and bonding with the officers, despite initially turning away from them. There seems to be an intimate he considers the laundry as he has been married for many years. Laundry calls Petito “crazy” but says he cares about her anyway.
Petito’s behavior was quite different. An officer said she was hyperventilating when he tried to talk to her. Petito said the laundry grabbed her face and officers were heard discussing how a witness said they saw her pushing her. Petito told officers he hit the laundry.
Ruth Glenn, president of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, said, “Her response to law enforcement is typical. She is very upset and is blaming and blaming herself when she calms down.”
One officer asked Petito, “Is he generally patient enough with you?” The officers eventually decide that Petito was the attacker.
“It feels like the typical good old boy culture among law enforcement,” Lynch said. “And then there’s these stereotypes lingering: ‘Oh, she’s just crazy or she’s hysterical,’ at least, reducing domestic violence and such abuse as petty little talk between couples. …how scared she was is a bigger sign than anyone. Scratches on her face.”
The 911 caller who reported the incident told the dispatcher that “The gentleman was slapping the girl” And according to media reports is killing him.
Experts say dangerous stereotypes about domestic violence persist and partly why the public and law enforcement need better education on the dynamics of abuse, around concepts such as bi-directional violence (when both sides abuse) or self-defense.
Harmful myths about domestic violence include the belief that it is easy for victims to leave, that help is always available when asked for, and that abusers can be easily identified.
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‘I dig every inch of this poor girl’s life for my personal entertainment’
Despite its prevalence and brutality, domestic violence is often underreported or underreported.
In 2018, Snapchat ad . Feather Asked users “Would you rather: slap Rihanna or punch Chris Brown?” (Brown attacked Rihanna in 2009.)
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On the short-form video app Tiktok, The #GabbyPetito hashtag has been viewed over 500 million times, And some posts have been criticized as insensitive. One user called it a “tone deaf true crime”.
“Oh, you haven’t heard of Gabby Petito? Oh my god, girl, miss you. This stuff is so cool,” said TikTok creator Jessica Dean, blasting users’ absurdity in the now-viral video. “I made a 28-part monetized series about it on my TikTok, covering every single detail, including her Spotify playlist. I dig every inch of this poor girl’s life for my own personal entertainment.”
Tik Tok is on Gabby Petito Case. Are these true crime experts helping solve it?
Social media has contributed to the attention drawn around the case, which Lynch said likely fueled the spectacle.
“People get sucked into it,” she said, “as if they’re watching something on ‘True Crime,’ when really behind all that, after all, is a woman who (died).”
Women of color experience higher rates of domestic violence, but rarely get their stories told
Domestic violence disproportionately affects women of color, although their stories rarely garner national attention.
Indigenous women experience the highest rates of domestic violence and homicide. Between 2011 and September 2020, 710 Indigenous individuals were reported missing in Wyoming, and 57% of them are women, according to a report funded by the Wyoming Division of Victim Services. Only 30% of Indigenous people had newspaper media coverage, compared to 51% of white homicide victims.
Stewart said, “I don’t want to take anything away from what happened to Gabby or what’s happening to her family. We’ll also ask the media to realize that this is happening to other families as well.” “
Two missing sisters. A strange note.:For 20 years a family has been asking where are our girls?
there are black women too More likely to experience homicide related to domestic violence Compared to white women, according to a 2020 report from the Violence Policy Center, which writes that their deaths “have almost always been influenced by the toll violence takes on black men.”
Glenn said, “(Petito) is not the only one who has had this kind of experience.” “Why is this on top of the news? I keep asking reporters, ‘Why is this different?'”
If you are a victim of domestic violence, National Domestic Violence Hotline Allows you to speak confidentially with trained advocates online or by phone, which they recommend for people who think their online activity is being monitored by their abuser (800-799-7233) Is. They can help survivors develop a plan to achieve safety for themselves and their children.
safe horizon The hotline provides crisis counseling, safety planning, and shelter-finding assistance at 1(800) 621-HOPE (4673). it also has one chat feature Where you can contact for help confidentially by computer or phone.
Survivors Can Also Call New York City anti violence project Receive the 247 English/Spanish hotline and support at 212-714-1141. If it’s not secure to call but email is possible, report here avp.org/get-help And leave secure contact information, and someone will contact.