Brian Laundrie: Dog the Bounty Hunter wants to explain difference between manslaughter and murder
NORTH PORT, FLORIDA: American television personality, bounty hunter, and former bail bondsman Duane Lee Chapman, better known as Dog the Bounty Hunter, said that he wants to speak to missing Brian Laundrie's father. Chapman told Dr Oz in an interview on Tuesday, September 28, that while parents typically insist they don't know where their children are after being accused of a crime, they know "50 percent of the time".
A federal court in Wyoming earlier issued an arrest warrant for Laundrie in relation to a grand jury indictment for his “activities following the death of Gabrielle Petito.” The grand jury indicted Laundrie after determining he used “one or more unauthorized devices”, including a debit card and PIN numbers for two bank accounts, to fraudulently obtain more than $1,000 between the dates of August 30 and September 1. Who the card belonged to, has not yet been revealed.
The attorney for Laundrie's family contacted the FBI on September 17 indicating they wanted to talk about their son's disappearance. They said they have not seen him since September 14. He told his parents he was going for a hike in the Carlton Reserve, a roughly 25,000-acre wetlands area in Sarasota County and has not been seen since. Laundrie's family told police he left home with his backpack. Since then, authorities have been combing the swampy area, looking for him.
Chapman earlier told Fox News that a tipster sent him to a park in Florida to investigate the disappearance of Laundrie. Chapman said that tips pointed him to the Fort De Soto Park, 75 miles away from Laundrie's home. He claimed that Laundrie and his parents were at the park from September 6 through September 8.
"They were registered, went through the gate. They’re on camera. They were here," he told Fox News. "We think at least if he’s not here right now, we are sure he was caught on camera as he went in the gate — that he was here for sure. Not over in the swamp." He added, "Allegedly, what we’re hearing, is two people left on the 8th. Three people came in on the 6th, and two people left on the 8th. I think he’s been here for sure."
A Pinellas County sheriff spokesperson released this statement about Chapman's claims. "No we are not heading to Ft. De Soto and there has been no confirmed sighting of Brian in Pinellas County. We will refer you back to North Port PD for any further questions."
ABC 7 Sarasota reported that records from the Pinellas County Parks show that Laundrie's mother, Roberta Laundrie, did check in to the park on September 6 and checked out on September 8. The records, however, did not show if the missing 23-year-old was with her. WPBF 25 News spoke to the Laundrie family lawyer, who said that Laundrie was staying with his parents during those dates, and they went camping. "That dog doesn't know what he's talking about," the lawyer said. "They did go to that campground September 6 and September 7 as a family and they all left together despite the claims of others."
Chapman also reportedly knocked on the door of Laundrie's family home on September 25 and no one answered. Reportedly, Laundrie's mother called 911 instead of answering the door. "In murder one, you're facing the death penalty. A manslaughter is a life sentence with the possibility of parole. I wanted to explain to him, 'I know exactly what you're going through right now. As a matter of fact, I personally went through it.' So, I just wanted to talk to the dad,” said Chapman, who was convicted of first-degree murder in 1976.