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As Florida investigators try to find Brian Laundrie, they note it’s possible he may have hurt himself.
The 23-year-old boyfriend of Gabrielle “Gabby” Petito apparently vanished last week after telling his family he was going for a hike on Tuesday. His lawyer announced that he was missing on Friday, and a manhunt to find him was launched at the 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County. Searches on both Saturday and Sunday have seemingly turned up empty.
“As far as hurting himself in there, we don’t know that one way or another,” North Port Police spokesperson Josh Taylor told the New York Post. “I think it’s a possibility certainly.”
He has not immediately responded to Oxygen.com’s request for comment.
“Does anyone not think it’s possible he went out there and shot himself in the head? Sure,” Taylor told the Post. “We don’t have any information about where he’s at.”
A notice from police was found on Laundrie’s Ford Mustang, parked near the Carlton Reserve, on Wednesday by his parents, their attorney Steven Bertolino told the New York Post. The notice was a request for the car to be moved.
Police in North Fort told Florida outlet WWSB that the car was picked up by Laundrie’s parents at the Carlton Reserve after he disappeared. The vehicle was at the Laundrie house by Friday night.
It’s the same house where Laundrie had been from Sept. 1 until Tuesday. Petito was reported missing by her family on Long Island on Sept. 11, 10 days after Laundrie returned from their cross-country trip without her. Her van, which the couple had converted into a camper, was found at the Laundrie home. The FBI executed a “court-authorized search warrant” on Monday at the home, FBI Tampa tweeted on Friday morning.
“All of Gabby's family want the world to know that Brian is not missing, he is hiding. Gabby is missing,” a statement from the law office of Richard B. Stafford, who represents Petito’s family, stated on Saturday.
Petito’s apparent remains were found on Sunday as investigators searched the border of Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming; that's where she was the last time her family spoke to her in late August. FBI Supervisory Special Agent Charles Jones said at a press conference following the discovery that the remains were “consistent with the description” of the missing travel blogger. An autopsy to positively identify her and the manner in which she died is reportedly scheduled this week.
Steven Bertolino, an attorney for the Laundrie family, has not immediately responded to Oxygen.com’s request for comment. He called the discovery of Petito’s apparent remains “heartbreaking” on Sunday.
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