FORT MYERS, Fla. (ABC4) – A Florida couple says they camped next to the Laundrie family in Fort De Soto Park in early September and may have even captured one, Brian, on camera. The manhunt for Brian Laundrie continues in Florida.
The FBI and North Port Police have been searching for Laundrie since learning of the disappearance, and later death, of his girlfriend, Gabby Petito. Laundrie has been identified as a person of interest in Petito’s death, which has been ruled a homicide. Late last week, the FBI even issued a federal arrest warrant for Laundrie, accusing him of “use of unauthorized access devices” following Petito’s death.
It has been two weeks since Laundrie’s parents say they saw their son. They reported him missing to the police on Sept. 17. Since then, authorities have been searching the Carlton Reserve in Florida, a 25,000-acre nature preserve where Laundrie is said to frequent. Duane Chapman, better known by the name of his TV show, “Dog the Bounty Hunter,” says he believes Laundrie may be in a different nature area roughly 65 miles away from the Carlton Reserve.
Chapman says he learned the Laundrie family had reserved a campground at Fort De Soto from September 1-3. Laundrie is believed to have returned to Florida from the road trip on September 1. A few days later, from September 6-8, Chapman says the Laundrie family again camped at the state park. He continues, saying he has learned three people were in the vehicle when the Laundrie family arrived at the campground on Sept. 6.
ABC4 affiliate WFLA has confirmed Laundrie’s family spent Sept. 6 through Sept. 8 at Fort De Soto Park. Public records of registered campers show Laundrie’s mother, Roberta Laundrie reserved a campsite and had checked into “Site 001-Waterfront.” The family’s attorney, Steven Bertolino confirmed the family spent time camping at the park and all left the park together.
Another ABC4 affiliate, ABC7, spoke with a Fort Myers couple who camped next to the Laundrie family on Sept. 6. The couple says they reviewed photos from the trip and found a truck and camper similar to those parked in front of the Laundrie home.
ABC7 spoke to that couple. You can see their interview in the video player below:
The Laundrie family attorney released a statement Monday saying, “Chris and Roberta Laundrie do not know where Brian is. They are concerned about Brian and hope the FBI can locate him. The speculation by the public and some in the press that the parents assisted Brian in leaving the family home or in avoiding arrest on a warrant that was issued after Brian had already been missing for several days is just wrong.”