Federal prosecutors are considering whether to charge ‘additional individuals’ in the disappearance and murder of Gabby Petito, her family’s lawyer said Tuesday, after Brian Laundrie was ruled to have killed himself with a bullet to the head.
Richard Stafford, who represents the late van-life influencer’s family, said federal prosecutors and investigators have not closed the case following Tuesday’s ruling that Laundrie, 23, the sole suspect in Petito’s murder, committed suicide.
The lawyer would not specify if Laundrie’s parents, Chris and Roberta, were the ‘individuals’ in the feds’ cross-hairs, but the couple had come under fire for staying distant from the investigation until the days leading up to the discovery of their son’s body.
‘The family was asked to not comment and let the FBI continue their investigation and allow the United States Attorney’s Office to make a determination on whether any additional individuals will be charged,’ Stafford said in a statement.
Laundrie’s body was found October 20 after a month-long manhunt in Florida’s Carlton Reserve, with an autopsy from the state Medical Examiner’s Office ruling that he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
Steve Bertolino, the attorney representing Laundrie’s parents, told DailyMail.com that one of the family’s guns was missing when Laundrie vanished, but that the FBI kept it secret because they didn’t want the public to panic. It still remains unclear where the gun is now.
Federal prosecutors and investigators are still looking into the disappearance and murder of Gabby Petito, 22, and the suicide of the sole suspect, Brian Laundrie (pictured)
Richard Stafford, center, represents Petito’s family. He said prosecutors are considering charges for ‘additional individuals’ tied to the case
Laundrie allegedly murdered Petito during their nation-wide van tour over the summer. He went missing on September 17 and his body was recovered a month later
Bertolino told Insider that he has ‘no reason to believe any charges will be filed against the dead man’s parents. The Laundries had received national backlash for their silence when Petito was first reported missing on September 11.
‘Chris and Roberta are still mourning the loss of their son and are hopeful that these findings bring closure to both families,’ Bertolino said.
While they FBI continues to investigate the case, the agency has received backlash for failing to confirm that Laundrie was armed as dozens of law enforcement officials began combing through the vast Carlton Reserve on September 20.
Chris and Roberta faced national criticism for their silence when Gabby Petito was first reported missing on September 11
Laundrie’s remains were found north of the entrance to Myakkahatchee Creek, in the Big Slough Preserve, off an unpaved trail near a bridge where Brian’s parents said he liked to visit. It is four miles north of their home in North Port, Florida
The FBI is now facing backlash after ‘hiding’ that Laundrie was ‘armed and dangerous,’ knowing the public was assisting in the search for him. Many people claimed to have had encounters with Laundrie
Bertolino had confirmed that after the Laundries reported their son missing on September 17, they surrendered ‘five or six’ guns stored in their home to the FBI, telling officials that one was missing. That detail was never publicly confirmed until this week.
‘We didn’t want the public going into a frenzy on that. I don’t think they considered him dangerous to anybody he met on the street,’ Bertolino said.
Laundrie had been the main suspect in Petito’s disappearance and murder after he arrived back home, alone, in North Port, Florida on September 1 from a cross-country road trip he embarked on with Gabby in her white 2012 Ford Transit van.
Their loved-up Instagram persona was a far cry from the combative relationship that was playing out behind the scenes.
Steve Bertolino, the attorney representing the Laundrie’s, said he does not believe Chris and Roberta Laundrie will be charged in connection to Petito’s murder
Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito were engaged to be married prior to their deaths
Despite their picturesque social media posts, the couple’s tour took sour turns when they began fighting in public. They were pulled over in Utah just a few weeks before Petito vanished
Just a few weeks before she vanished, police in Moab, Utah, were called to the pair’s van after fellow travelers saw Brian hit Gabby.
They were separated for the night, and Gabby was deemed to be the aggressor.
She had not been heard from since August 26.
As cops searched for the missing 22-year-old – who was eventually found dead at Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming – Laundrie’s parents reported him missing.
They said he had gone to take a walk at a local nature preserve, where his remains were found on October 20 after an extensive search of the Carlton Preserve.
Police also recovered a notebook belonging to Brian, along with a backpack and a dry bag containing some of his personal items from Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park.
The contents of the notebook, which investigators claimed were salvageable, have yet to be made public.
TIMELINE OF GABBY PETITO DISAPPEARANCE AND DEATH
July 1: Gabby Petito and her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie left Blue Point, New York for a cross-country road trip
August 12: Police in Moab, Utah respond to a domestic incident involving the couple
Aug. 17: Laundrie allegedly flies back to Florida to ‘clear out a storage unit’
Aug. 21: Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, has his last FaceTime video call with his daughter who was in Salt Lake City, Utah
Aug. 23: Laundrie flies back to Utah to ‘rejoin Gabby’ on their trip
Aug. 24: Petito is last seen at a hotel in Salt Lake City with Laundrie
Aug. 25: Petito makes final call to her mother, Nichole Schmidt, saying she was in Grand Teton National Park
Aug. 25 or 26: The couple chats with the owner of a shop called ‘Rustic Row’ in Victor, Utah for about 20 minutes
Aug. 27: Video of Petito’s van was taken by blogger Jenn Bethune around 6.30 pm at the Spread Creek Campground; Witnesses say they saw a ‘commotion’ with the couple at Merry Piglets Tex-mex restaurant in Jackson, Wyoming
Aug. 29: The day that Wisconsin TikToker Miranda Baker claimed that she and her boyfriend were approached by Laundrie at Grand Teton National Park and asked them for a ride at 5.30pm
Aug. 30: Schmidt receives the last text from Petito’s phone: ‘No service in Yosemite’
Sept. 1: Laundrie returns to his parents’ home in North Port, Florida in a van without Petito
Sept. 6-7: Laundrie and his parents visit Fort De Soto campsite in Florida
Sept. 11: Schmidt reports Petito missing to authorities in New York; Petito and Laundrie’s van was impounded by police in Florida that same day
Sept. 12: Grand Teton National Park rangers search for Petito
Sept. 13: Laundrie’s lawyer says on October 5 that his parents now ‘believe’ this was the day they last saw him heading for a hike
Sept. 14: Laundrie issues a statement about Petito’s disappearance through his lawyer; Laundrie’s parents claim on September 17 that Laundrie left his parents’ home for a hike this day and they hadn’t seen from him since
Sept. 15: Laundrie is officially named a person of interest in Petito’s case
Sept. 17: Laundrie family attorney confirms his whereabouts are unknown
Sept. 18: North Port police and the FBI start searching the Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County for missing Brian Laundrie
Sept. 19: Bethune realizes she has video of Petito’s van around 12am and submits the FBI with the footage 10 minutes later; Officials announce a body was found near Grand Teton National Park that matched Petito’s description in the afternoon
Sept. 21: Coroner confirms remains found in Grand Tetons belong to Petito. Her death is ruled a homicide but her cause of death is still under invesetigation
Sept. 20 – 22: FBI and North Port police continue search for Laundrie in Carton Reserve
Sept. 22: Neighbors say they saw the Laudrie family pack up their detached camper on the day Gabby was reported missing. DailyMail.com photos show the camper was back in the driveway two days later, on September 13
Sept. 23: FBI issues an arrest warrant for Laundrie for ‘use of unauthorized access device’ for fraudulently using a Capitol One Bank debit card that was not his between August 30 and September 1 to spend $1,000; A probe is launched into the police handling of the Utah police incident on Aug. 12; Laundrie’s parents visit their attorney in Orlando
Sept. 25: Dog the Bounty Hunter joins the search for Laundrie
Sept. 26: A funeral is held for Petito in Holbrook, New York, and her family launch a charity to help parents find missing children
Sept. 27: Manhunt for Laundrie in the Carlton Reserve is scaled back after 10 day search doesn’t find him. Dog the Bounty Hunter says Laundrie and his parents stayed at Fort De Soto Park from September 1-3 and September 6-8 – and that on the latter visit only the parents left
Sept. 28: Laundrie’s mom is accused of using a burner phone to contact her son Sept. 29: Documents reveal Laundrie’s mom canceled a reservation for the Fort De Soto Park campsite for two from September 1 to 3 and booked for three from September 6 to 8; FBI seizes surveillance footage from site; FBI investigates lead Laundrie bought a burner phone on September 14;
Sept. 30: Bodycam footage from a second officer at the August 12 incident is released showing a distressed Petito admitting Laundrie hit her; FBI agents collect more evidence from the Laundrie home
Oct. 1: It emerges Laundrie’s sister had contact with him after she said she did
Oct. 2: A hiker along the Appalachian Trail claims to have seen Laundrie near the border of Tennessee and North Carolina
Oct. 3: Investigators searched the area on the Appalachian trail for any signs that Laundrie had been there
Oct. 4: Laundrie’s sister told protestors outside her home that her family has been ignoring her after they rebuked her story and that she does not know where her brother is
Oct 5: Laundrie’s sister appeared on Good Morning America to say she would turn her brother in if she knew where he is;
Oct. 7: Laundrie’s father Christopher joins FBI agents on the search for his son at the Carlton Reserve but the search brings up no clues
Oct. 12: Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue announces autopsy findings which show Petito died by strangulation; No specific date of death was given – only that she was dead 3-4 weeks before her body was found
Oct. 16: Petito’s parents are seen collecting her ashes from the Valley Mortuary in Jackson, Wyoming
October 20: Human remains found in Carlton Reserve