FBI Calls Petito Death ‘Murder’ Following Recovery Of Laundrie Notebook, Backpack
Police tape restricts access to Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park on October 20, 2021 in North Port, Florida.
Mark Taylor/Getty Images

After finding possessions, such as a notebook, belonging to Brian Laundrie and possibly his remains, the FBI on Wednesday said that the 23-year-old is a person of interest in the murder case of his girlfriend Gabby Petito.

Last month, Laundrie was named a person of interest in the homicide of Petito.

“As you’re aware, the FBI and the North Port Police Department and our state and local law enforcement partners have been searching the area of the Carlton Reserve for Brian Laundrie, a person of interest in the murder of Gabby Petito,” said FBI Tampa Division Special Agent in Charge Michael McPherson, Fox 59 reported.

Partial human remains and personal belongings were found in an area of Florida’s Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park on Wednesday, The Daily Wire reported:

“Human remains were found in the same area where personal belongings were found of Brian Laundrie, Gabby Petito’s fiancé who’s been missing for over a month, officials said Wednesday,” per NBC News. “A senior law enforcement official says what appears to be partial human remains have been found in the Carlton Reserve in a location that was previously underwater. There is no confirmation the remains belong to Laundrie.”

“The remains were found near a backpack, according to this source, which may be consistent with the type of items Laundrie may have had in his possession,” the outlet added.

Fox News reported that the FBI confirmed to reporters that investigators found “personal items, such as a backpack and notebook belonging to Brian Laundrie.”

Petito was reported missing more than a month ago. As the search for the travel blogger intensified, Laundrie was reported missing, too.

The 23-year-old was named a “person of interest” in the case, and his family home was raided by the FBI and reportedly declared a “crime scene.” An arrest warrant was issued for Laundrie on September 23, not for Petito’s death but for allegedly using stolen bank cards.

It’s unclear when Petito was last seen, but a couple came forward in late September claiming they witnessed Petito and Laundrie having a “full-blown incident” at a Jackson Hole, Wyoming, restaurant. The Daily Wire reported:

Nina Celie Angelo and boyfriend Matthew England said they saw an “agitated” Laundrie arguing with a waitress at Tex-Mex restaurant Merry Piglets between 1 and 2 p.m. Petito and Laundrie were eventually “kicked out of the restaurant,” Angelo said via social media.

Merry Piglets confirmed on Instagram that the pair were indeed at the spot on August 27. “Yes, we can confirm Gabby and Brian were in Merry Piglets…We have already notified the FBI and they are aware. We are letting them do their jobs and we are respecting Gabby’s family and have nothing further to comment,” the restaurant said.

… Angelo believes Laundrie was arguing over the bill or money more generally. “She described his body language as ‘aggressive’ and said he left and returned about four times,” the report noted, adding, “Petito came inside and apologized for Laundrie’s behavior” at one point and “looked visibly upset.”

Related: Gabby Petito Case: ‘Human Remains’ Found In Florida Reserve Near Items Belonging To Brian Laundrie, Coroner Called

Related: Park Ranger Warned Gabby Petito Of ‘Toxic’ Relationship, Urged Her To ‘Find Another Path’ Before Disappearance

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