According to the Washington Examiner, the FBI has announced a federal arrest warrant has been issued for Petito’s boyfriend, Brian Laundrie.
“The facts and circumstances”
In a statement, the FBI confirmed that the U.S. District Court of Wyoming issued a warrant on Wednesday “for Brian Christopher Laundrie pursuant to a Federal Grand Jury indictment related to Mr. Laundrie’s activities following the death of Gabrielle Petito.”
As for the homicide case, the agency indicated that “the facts and circumstances” remain under investigation.
To that end, the statement urged “individuals with knowledged of Mr. Laundrie’s role in this matter or his current whereabouts to contact the FBI,” as the Examiner reported.
The indictment has also been made public, including the prosecution’s assertion that on Aug. 30 and Sept. 1, Laundrie “knowingly and with intent to defraud, used one or more unauthorized access devices,” specifically a Capitol One debit card and personal indentification number to make about $1,000 in purchases.
Prosecutors initially wanted to keep the warrant sealed, but it was made publicly available on Thursday in the hopes that it will help locate Laundrie, who has himself gone missing.
Laundrie was last seen about a week ago. His parents claimed that he disappeared after heading out for a hike. Investigators have since spent hours going through his home in Florida to collect potential evidence in the case, questioning his parents, and talking to his neighbors.
Evidence suggests Laundrie is equipped to survive in nature, leading to widespread speculation regarding his whereabouts.
A number of social media sleuths have opined that the situation could be similar to the long search for Olympic bomber Eric Rudolph.
As one post explained: “Eric Rudolph disappeared for years after bombing doctor clinics and killing several people. He knew how to live off the land. There were people who helped him by providing food, etc. Laundrie seems to fancy himself as a survivalist and superior to everyone else in the outdoors.”
Meanwhile, Petito’s mother Nicole Schmidt is reportedly sharing bracelets with those closest to the family in memory of her daughter, explaining: “It represents Gabby. Remember to celebrate and enjoy life and not be sad.”