A lawyer for the Laundry family said Monday that a preliminary autopsy of Brian Laundry’s remains did not reveal the cause of his death, though a more thorough investigation would be carried out.
Laundry remains found last week In a wilderness park in Florida after a month’s search. He was the only one interested in the murder of his fiancée, Gabby Pettito, when the pair went on a cross-country road trip to the national parks. Pettito’s body was found on September 19 Near a campground in Wyoming.
The matter garnered worldwide attention and was investigated by social media users across the country, leaving many wondering if we will ever learn what happened to the couple.
Laundry’s attorney Steve Bertolino said in text messages on Monday that he was told by police that an autopsy by a Sarasota County medical examiner did not yield any concrete results on Bryan’s death.
“I was told that the manner and cause of death had not been determined and the remains were sent to an anthropologist (for further evaluation),” Bertolino said.
According to the FBI, Laundry’s skeletal remains found at the Florida Nature Preserve were positively identified using dental records last week. The medical examiner’s office declined to comment Monday, as did the FBI office in Denver that is leading the investigation.
Eventually, Laundry’s remains will be cremated and no funerals are planned by his family, Bertolino said.
No information has yet been released about what investigators found in the backpack and notebook found with the laundry remains.
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Laundry was the only person identified in Pettito’s murder, but he was never charged in connection with his death. After his disappearance he was charged with unauthorized use of debit cards and accounts.
The two were traveling across the country in a white van together, and suspicions arose after returning to their home in North Port, Florida in the van without laundry. She was reported missing a few days later in New York by her parents, and Laundry would not cooperate with law enforcement. Laundry soon disappeared, was telling his family that he was hiking in a vast reserve near the house.
There has also been widespread speculation about the issue of potential intimate partner violence in the relationship, leading to police body camera footage When officers in Moab, Utah pulled over the couple on August 12 after a 911 call that “the gentleman was slapping the girl.”
The verdict was delivered on Petito’s death strangulation. The case’s coroner said his body had been lying there for weeks before it was found.
Some experts have said that while Petito’s murder could end a cold case, the only person who lived with him before the murder is now dead.
“The investigation could go on indefinitely,” former Hillsborough County Prosecutor Steven Capriati told local station WFLA. “If they go and decide Brian was responsible and there’s no one else they can blame, that’s the end and the family has to live with it and it’s a sad event.”
Petito’s great-aunt Jill Hengel said that finding Laundry dead meant it would be difficult to find answers to Petito’s murder.
“I don’t consider it justice, because parents will never know what happened. And they want to know,” Hengel told local CBS affiliate WTSP.
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Will we know the cause of Brian Laundry’s death?
The FBI said the laundry remains were identified using dental records, as only skeletal remains were found. This will make it more difficult to ascertain the cause of his death.
The remains were found in an area that was previously submerged in water. Authorities said Laundry’s father first saw a bag belonging to Laundry, and law enforcement officers then discovered the remains and other items, including a notebook – after a five-week search by law enforcement.
Since a preliminary autopsy could not definitively identify the cause of death, Laundry’s remains will be examined by an anthropologist, the family’s lawyer said on Monday.
“There can be no way to determine how he died,” Jim Clemente, a former FBI profiler, told CNN. “If he drowned, for example, there would be no evidence of it on his skeleton.”
Dr Cyril Veich, who was involved in the high-profile death investigation, said a key part of the investigation would be to determine how long the body had been.
“If he shot himself, it would still be obvious,” Veitch said. “If he stabs himself, he may be wiped out or clearly obscured depending on the postmortem period and drowning in the water.”
Also of interest would be what the contents of the found notebook are and whether it is sufficient for reading. The material may provide clues as to what happened to Petito or whether the laundry was intended to harm itself.
Steven Bertolino, a lawyer for the Laundry family, told ABC’s “Good Morning America” that suicide was “always a concern,” his state of mind when he left for the hike.
Will there be less attention?
The laundry and petito affair has attracted nationwide attention, and sparked a barrage of speculation by so-called “social media investigators”. They are following every step of the investigation, and sometimes conspiracy theories are sent out of control.
Even after the laundry remains were identified by law enforcement, conspiracy theories have persisted.
Some social media users have questioned whether Laundry pretended his death to avoid prosecution for killing Petito, or whether someone else killed both Petito and Laundry outright. There is no basis for both theories in evidence.
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Internet officials have also questioned the involvement of the Laundry family in his disappearance. The Laundries did not initially speak with police, directing them to their attorneys after Pettito’s disappearance was reported, fueling doubts about whether they knew anything about Pettito’s death. Many have accused Chris and Roberta Laundry of covering up for their son. His lawyer has nailed it down firmly.
Several times during laundry searches, false visibility went viral on social media sites such as Twitter, prompting police to make statements in dispute over Laundry’s arrest.
But additional attention was given to helping find the bodies of other missing people. Pettito’s body was also discovered thanks to travel bloggers, who filmed the couple’s van nearby and reported the location.
Contribution: Associated Press