FBI says apparent human remains found near possessions that may be Brian Laundrie’s in Florida reserve

A picture of vast greenery and forestry in Florida
Police are searching the Carlton Reserve for Brian Laundrie. North Port Police Department
  • Apparent human remains were found in the Florida reserve where Brian Laundrie went missing, the FBI confirmed Wednesday.
  • Laundrie – the sole person of interest in the death of fiancée Gabby Petito – was reported missing on September 17 and has been the subject of an FBI manhunt since.
  • Items belonging to Laundrie had been found in the area earlier on Wednesday.

Apparent human remains have been found in the Florida reserve where Brian Laundrie, fiancé of Gabby Petito, reportedly went missing, authorities confirmed Wednesday.

The remains were discovered in a previously flooded area in the Carlton Reserve, according to Michael McPherson, Special Agent in Charge in the Tampa Division of the FBI.

“Earlier today, investigators found what appears to be human remains along with personal items, such as a backpack and notebook belonging to Brian Laundrie,” McPherson told reporters during a press conference.

Authorities have not confirmed if the remains belong to Laundrie.

Some items of Laundrie’s had been discovered in the Florida wildlife reserve where authorities had been searching for the missing man, a lawyer for the family told Insider Wednesday.

The FBI’s Tampa office said Wednesday that an evidence team was processing the scene.

Following the discovery, a team from the District 12 Medical Examiners Office in Sarasota arrived at the reserve, authorities confirmed to Insider.

A human remains detection team from the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office was also requested by the North Port Police Department to go to the nature preserve Wednesday to assist in the search for Laundrie, spokesperson Amanda Hunt said.

Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park, where the items were found, connects to the 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve. The FBI had been searching for Laundrie in the Carlton Reserve but found no trace of him in over a month.

Laundrie was initially reported missing by his parents on September 17, who claimed he left the house for a hike on September 14 and never returned. Later, they changed their story, stating their son had actually set out on September 13.

Since then, the FBI had been conducting a manhunt for the man who is the sole person of interest in Gabby Petito’s death.

Laundrie’s parents, Chris and Roberta, opted to join the search Wednesday morning.

“The FBI and [North Port Police Department] were informed last night of Brian’s parents’ intentions and they met Chris and Roberta there this morning, Laundrie family attorney Steven Bertolino told Insider.

The FBI and other law enforcement agencies then conducted a more thorough search of the reserve in Sarasota County.

Laundrie was wanted by the feds for bank-card-related fraud in which he used Petito’s debit card after she had died.

Laundrie and Petito set out for their cross-country road trip on July 2. But Laundrie returned to their home in North Port, Florida on September 1 with Petito’s van – and without Petito.

Petito’s body was found near Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on September 19 where her death was almost immediately ruled a homicide. A coroner announced on October 12 her cause of death was strangulation and that her body was there for 3-4 weeks before she was found.