Gabby Petito’s fiancé Brian Laundrie could have escaped US on jet after going missing seven days ago, warns investigator
MISSING Brian Laundrie could have "easily" escaped the US on a jet after vanishing in the wake of his fiancé Gabby Petito's disappearance, a top US investigator has warned.
He has not been seen since last Tuesday after telling his parents he was going hiking in Carlton Reserve in Florida.
The 23-year-old was named a "person of interest" in the case after returning home alone from the couple's cross-country road trip on September 1 and refusing to cooperate with authorities.
Now it is feared Laundrie could have already left the country - and may have been aided by the current mask mandate.
Private investigator Harvey Morse, from Florida’s Locaters International, explained that Laundrie could have simply slipped through the airport as he has not been charged with a crime.
The search for Laundrie continues after he was declared a "person of interest" last week in the disappearance of Gabby Petito.
The veteran detective with 50 years experience said he could be taking advantage of the ability to remain undetected while donning a face covering.
"It would be easy for him to get on a plane," he told Insider.
Morse believes cops will be considering two separate scenarios regarding Laundrie's whereabouts - that he is in hiding and that he will — or already has — attempted suicide.
He thinks the intense media coverage and potential legal consequences of the case mean the chances of Laundrie taking his own life were "above average".
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North Port Police spokesman Josh Taylor has alluded to a similar theory, as the trail remains cold in the search for Laundrie.
Cops said they had "exhausted all avenues" in searching the sprawling 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve.
"As far as hurting himself in there (Carlton Reserve), we don’t know that one way or another. I think it’s a possibility certainly," Taylor told the New York Post.
"Does anyone not think it’s possible he went out there and shot himself in the head? Sure."
"We don’t have any information about where he’s at."
But it is feared authorities may have bungled the crucial initial stages of the investigation - as Laundrie was allowed to roam free.
Former Miami-Dade homicide detective Pat Diaz suggested a search warrant could've been secured for Petito's missing case without suspicion of a crime.
"Why would you [try to] get consent from the guy, and not get a search warrant?" Diaz asked on Sunday, according to Fox News.
"You can get a search warrant for everything in that house, including his laptop."
As authorities examine his hard drives for clues, Morse said the best outcome would be for Laundrie to turn himself in.
"I hope that this person is found and, if he is the perpetrator, he pleads guilty and doesn’t draw this case out, which would cause so much pain for so many people," he continued.
Alabama police were investigating a string of possible sightings of Laundrie in Mobile on Monday, as his parent's home in Florida was raided.
A Tiktok user known as Jessica Over Yonder has now said she is "100 per cent sure" she saw Laundrie, who was on his own, parking his van after he is thought to have gone missing.
She described him and looking "awkward and confused".
It comes after TikToker Miranda Baker believes she picked him up on August 29, four days after the last time Petito was known to have called her family.
Laundrie is thought to have told Baker he had been camping alone while Petito worked on their social media page in their van.
According to Baker, Laundrie got out of her car when she said she was heading to Jackson Hole.
WHAT WE KNOW
An autopsy is scheduled to take place to determine whether a body found in the Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming is that of Gabby Petito.
The vlogger had been traveling across America since July and was last seen on August 24 leaving a Utah hotel with fiancé Brian Laundrie.
They visited national parks and tourist attractions, documenting their trip on social media, before she went missing.
On September 1, Laundrie returned home to Florida in their white van, without Petito.
Cops found the couple's Ford Transit van in North Port, Florida, during the weekend of September 11 - when Gabby's parents reported her disappearance.