Federal prosecutors want to hold a hearing to detain Laundrie – even though investigators don’t know where he is

Brian Laundrie in the desert with a cop behind him
This police camera video provided by the Moab Police Department shows Brian Laundrie talking to a police officer on Aug. 12. The Moab Police Department via AP
  • Federal prosecutors have moved to hold a pre-trial detention hearing for Gabby Petito’s fiancé, Brian Laundrie.
  • The motion was filed on the same day that Wyoming’s District Court issued an arrest warrant for Laundrie.
  • Laundrie was reported missing by his family on September 17 – and authorities continue to search for him.
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Federal prosecutors in Wyoming have moved to hold a pre-trial detention hearing for Gabby Petito’s fiancé, Brian Laundrie, as a manhunt for the missing 23-year-old continues.

In the motion for the detention hearing, prosecutors state that there is a “serious risk” that the “defendant will flee” as well as a “serious risk for obstruction of justice.”

“The court should detain the Defendant because there are no conditions of release which will reasonably assure” Laundrie’s appearance in court or the “safety of any other person and the community,” according to the motion.

A pre-trial hearing in the case would allow prosecutors to argue that Laundrie should be detained immediately when and if investigators find him.

The motion requesting the detention hearing was filed on the same day that Wyoming’s District Court issued an arrest warrant for Laundrie in connection with the disappearance and death of Petito, 22.

The single-count indictment against Laundrie alleges that he “knowingly and with intent to defraud” used one or more “unauthorized access devices,” including a Capital One debit bank card, from August 30 to September 1 following the death of Petito.

Laundrie is accused of spending at least $US1,000 ($AU1,370) on the card during those three days, according to the indictment.

Petito’s body was found in a remote campsite in Wyoming’s Bridger-Teton National Forest on September 19. Her death has been ruled a homicide, according to a coroner’s initial findings.

Laundrie, who was named a person of interest on September 15 in connection to Petito’s then-disappearance.

Laundrie himself was reported missing by his family on September 17 after they told police he went out for a hike with a backpack at a nature preserve in Florida’s Sarasota County and never returned.

Law enforcement agencies have been searching the vast, alligator-infested Carlton Reserve for days to find him.