Family lawyer says Brian Laundry hasn’t been seen since Sept.
North Port, Fla. – Some who have been following the investigation involving Gabby Pettito and her fugitive fiancé, Brian Laundry, for 25 years have been drawing parallels between the murder of Kristin Smart and the case.
The body of 22-year-old Petito was discovered in Wyoming on September 19 and there has been a ruling since his death Homicide. Officials have yet to announce how he died.
Petito’s mother, Nicole Schmidt, reported her missing on September 11 in Suffolk County, New York, after she told officers she had not spoken to her daughter since 7 a.m. on August 30.
At the time, Petito was supposed to be traveling around the country and visiting national parks in his white Ford Transit van, along with his fiancé, Brian Laundry. But Brian returned to North Port, Florida, on 1 September in the house where he and his fiancé were staying with their parents. Brian makes it back to Florida with Vans, but without Petito.
According to the woman’s family, Brian Laundry never called her to say that her daughter was not with them. Her parents reportedly ignored phone calls and text messages from the Petito family, including one telling the laundry they were going to call the police.
According to Gabby’s father, Joe Petito, when police tried to speak with Brian, his parents reportedly had “papers on the door,” with instructions for police to contact their attorney.
Investigators seized the white van on September 11 and later issued a search warrant.
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A lawyer for Laundries has said that after Brian returned to North Port, “a phone was purchased on September 4, 2021 and Brian opened an account with AT&T for that phone.” TMZ reported that laundry was seen inside a cell phone store “with an old lady”, although the woman was not identified.
Then, the attorney announced on September 19 that Brian had gone missing on September 14 after telling his family that he was going to a local reserve. The family has since changed the date Brian was last seen to September 13.
His attorney said Brian’s parents were not physically involved in their son’s extensive search until Thursday, when law enforcement asked Chris Laundry to assist with that day’s efforts.
Shortly after his disappearance, authorities named Laundry as a person of interest in relation to Pettito’s disappearance at the time. On September 23, the FBI issued an arrest warrant accusing Laundry of bank card fraud.
Brian Laundry is still on the run but has not been directly charged with Pettito’s death. Laundry’s parents have not been arrested or charged in this case.
Some in the aftermath of the case have said that it is reminiscent of the disappearance of Kristin Smart in May 1996.
Witnesses said that Paul Flores was the last person seen with a very drunk Smart on May 25, 1996, as he helped drive him to his dorm after a party at California Polytechnic State University. Prosecutors said he killed Smart while trying to rape him in his dorm room.
His remains have not been found. In late September, a judge said that Paul Flores would stand trial on a murder charge in her suspicious death, and face trial as an accomplice for allegedly helping her father bury her body. Is.
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San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge Craig van Rooyen said at the time that the probable cause was Paul Flores, now 44, killed Smart and Reuben Flores, 80, helped dislodge his body.
Ever since incidents related to the Petito and Laundry investigations emerged, users have taken to Twitter to note some similarities. One user tweeted that the case reminded him of Smart “and how the Flores family helped their son,” the user wrote.
No one in the laundry family has yet been charged with anything related to Petito’s death.
A representative for the Kentucky Fried Homicide podcast described in a tweet that “a future for Brian and his family is similar to the life of Paul Flores and his family since the death of Kristin Smart.”
Prosecutors presented evidence that Smart’s body was once buried under a deck covered with lattice behind Reuben Flores’ home. Prosecutors said the body was taken from that location, and it was never found.
According to witnesses, traces of human blood were found under the deck along with stains in the soil and disturbances in the shape of the human body in the earth.
When Flores first spoke to the police, he cut short his conversations with Smart at the party and on his way home. She said that she went to her dorm under her own power, although other witnesses said that Flores was helping to capture her and that she had passed out earlier in the night.
And three days after Smart went missing, Flores had such a black eye that he told police he was playing basketball. Friends disputed that account, and Flores later changed his story to say it happened while working on his car.
As the search for Brian Laundry continues, officers search for T. Mabry has spent days exploring the Carlton Reserve, as well as Fort de Soto Park in Tierra Verde, where Brian saw his sister and camped with her parents on 6–8 September. .
Meanwhile, more than a dozen people have reported seeing Brian Laundry — or someone who matches his description — in other parts of the country, including near the Appalachian Trail in North Carolina.