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Was Brian Laundrie seen in Alabama? Internet suspects he's heading to Mexico

The attorney for Laundrie's family contacted the FBI on September 17 and said the family had not seen Brian Laundrie since Tuesday, September 14
Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito (VAN LIFE  Beginning Our Van Life Journey/YouTube)
Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito (VAN LIFE Beginning Our Van Life Journey/YouTube)

Authorities found a body "consistent" with missing Gabrielle ‘Gabby’ Petito, the 22-year-old woman, on September 19. However, her fiance Brian Laundrie, who is a 'Person of Interest' in the case also went missing on September 14, according to his family. Now, many online sleuths are speculating whether Laundrie has made his way to Alabama with plans to eventually escape to Mexico.

The body suspected to be Petito was found in a remote area of the Bridger-Teton National Forest, near the Spread Creek Dispersed campground, on Sunday. FBI spokesman Charles Jones said that formal identification of the remains has not been made and the cause of death is yet to be determined.


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The site where the body was found was not far from where two travel bloggers filmed the couple's van, seemingly abandoned, along a dirt road near Spread Creek on the evening of August 27, two days after Petito's last confirmed contact with her family. Laundrie has been named a "person of interest" in the case but has not been seen since he left his family's home in North Port, Florida, last Tuesday on September 14. The attorney for Laundrie's family reportedly contacted the FBI on September 17 indicating they wanted to talk about Laundrie’s disappearance. They said they have not seen him since Tuesday, September 14. Following this, authorities have been searching the 24,000-acre Carlton Reserve (also known as the T Mabry Carlton Jr Memorial Reserve) in the Sarasota area of the Gulf Coast. 

Police confirmed that Laundrie’s Ford Mustang was picked up by the Laundrie family at the Carlton Reserve. The car was at the Laundrie house Friday night when police arrived. North Port Police also said it is possible Laundrie could have hurt himself. “As far as hurting himself in there, we don’t know that one way or another. I think it’s a possibility certainly,” North Port Police spokesman Josh Taylor said. “Does anyone not think it’s possible he went out there and shot himself in the head? Sure. We don’t have any information about where he’s at.” 


Is Brian Laundrie in Alabama?

A screenshot of a text conversation has been making the rounds of social media. MEAWW has not been able to verify the veracity of the claims being made in the excerpt. Nor has the source of the messages been found as of yet. The messages claim that Laundrie was reportedly seen at Tillman’s Corner, in Mobile County, Alabama. A person called Lindsey said in the conversation, “This cop had to come look at our cameras tonight Brian laundrie was apparently in Tillman's corner on the 17th walking across Rangeline road and some idiot gave him a ride and dropped him off near Walmart.”

This person also wrote, “We didn't find anything. He said he's going to firehouse in the morning to look at theirs and he'll come back after that if he knows exactly what time we're looking for and where on the cameras.” Tillman’s Corner is roughly 600 miles away from Carlton Reserve, a distance that would require a lot of time to cover on foot. While it is possible that one can hitchhike, Laundrie’s face has become a well recognized one since he is a 'person of interest' in the Gabby Petito case. Thanks to social media platforms, online news websites, and the extensive television and newspaper coverage, it is somewhat improbable to expect that he hitchhiked without being recognized. 

At the same time, it’s worth noting that the North Port police has put a pause on the Carlton Reserve search. Kim Kuizon of Fox 13 WTVT tweeted on Monday, September 20, “The North Port Police Department currently has no plans to conduct a major search of the Carlton Reserve today. All media interviews from our Department are on hold until further notice.”


On Twitter, one person wrote, “#BrianLaundrie allegedly seen in #Alabama and was hitchhiking. #GABBYPETITO #GabbyPetitoMissing #findbrianlaundrie #wheresgabby.” Another tweet said, “Brian Laundrie spotted in Tillmans Corner, Alabama on 17 September. If this is verified, he's headed to Mexico to flee the country.” Both tweets carried the same text exchange.


Conspiracy theories are now circling around the possiblity that Laundrie wants to cross the border into Mexico. One tweet said, “Since #Laundrie parents protected #BrianLaundrie from authorities, wouldn’t they also misdirect them? Has he already crossed the border?” Another person said, “#BrianLaundrie is most definitely on his way to mexico after a report of a sighting in AL, how do you go from naples to AL? straight to mexico!” A reply to that tweet read, “If that was three days ago he could be as far as New Orleans by now. He’s a fit guy and apparently people are still giving him rides.”

One person wrote, “Since #BrianLaundrie was believed to be spotted in AL on the 17th it makes sense why his parents drove his car from the preserve instead of leaving it in hopes he’d be driving it home. My theory: they waited until he was safe in Mexico, then filed a fake missing persons report.”