Gabby Petito case: FBI closes homicide investigation as it reveals Brian Laundrie's notebook confession
Fox News Digital reports new details on Brian Laundrie search
Brian Laundrie’s parents were seen speaking to law enforcement in a Florida park.
The FBI on Friday is closing its investigation into the homicide of Gabby Petito and the subsequent suicide of her fiancé Brian Laundrie, who had been previously named a person of interest in her murder.
“All logical investigative steps have been concluded in this case,” FBI Denver Division Special Agent in Charge Michael Schneider said in a Friday statement. “The investigation did not identify any other individuals other than Brian Laundrie directly involved in the tragic death of Gabby Petito. The FBI’s primary focus throughout the investigation was to bring justice to Gabby and her family.”
Schnieder added that the public’s role in helping the FBI “in this endeavor was invaluable as the investigation was covered in the media around the world.”
Gabby Petito’s remains were found on Sept. 19, roughly three weeks after she went missing in Wyoming.
Petito’s family was in Florida on Thursday morning, roughly four months after their daughter was found strangled to death in Wyoming. An attorney representing Laundrie’s family said they had reached an agreement about how the couple’s property – including a notebook found with his remains – will be distributed.
The notebook contained “written statements by Mr. Laundrie claiming responsibility for Ms. Petito’s death,” according to the FBI.
“Gabby’s family would like to thank the FBI, specifically the Wyoming, Denver, New York and Tampa offices, all of their task force members and their assisting agencies,” Petito/Schmidt family lawyer Rick Stafford said in a Friday statement. “Gabby’s family would like to thank the FBI’s Victim Services Department for all they have done for them. Victim Services has been there for support from the earliest stages of this investigation and helped their entire family navigate through the worst moments of their lives.”
Images obtained exclusively by Fox News show Chris and Roberta Laundrie in the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park with at least one law enforcement officer on Wednesday
(Michael Ruiz/Fox News Digital)
Stafford continued: “We truly appreciate the FBI’s diligent and painstaking efforts in this extremely complicated case. The quality and quantity of the facts and information collected by the FBI leave no doubt that Brian Laundrie murdered Gabby.”
Laundrie attorney Steven Bertolino said the tragedy “has caused enormous emotional pain and suffering to all who loved either or both” Petito and Laundire.
“We can only hope that with today’s closure of the case each family can begin to heal and move forward and find peace in and with the memories of their children. May Gabby and Brian both rest in peace,” he said.
Petito disappeared in late August 2021 while on a cross-country road trip with Laundrie in her converted camper van.
Laundrie returned to North Port, Florida, where the couple’s trip began, on Sept. 1 without Petito, who was no longer responding to her family’s texts or calls.
A missing person case was officially opened on Sept. 11 when Petito’s mother reported her disappearance to authorities on Long Island, where Petito and Laundrie met in high school.
FBI agents at the Florida home of Brian Laundrie’s parents Monday, Sept. 20, 2021.
(Fox News Digital/Paul Best)
Laundrie, meanwhile, went missing himself two days later on Sept. 13, but his parents did not report him missing until Sept. 17.
While authorities in Florida scoured the nearby Carlton Reserve for any sign of Laundrie, search teams looked for Petito around Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, which was her last known location.
Her remains were eventually found on Sept. 19 in the Spread Creek camping area, just north of Jackson Hole, Wyoming. A coroner ruled her death a homicide by manual strangulation.
One day after finding Petito’s remains, the FBI raided the home of Brian Laundrie’s parents in North Port, where Petito and Laundrie lived while saving up money for their trip.
About a month later, Laundrie’s remains were found along with a backpack and other personal items in the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park, which is adjacent to the Carlton Reserve. He died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, an autopsy later revealed.
When Laundrie’s parents reported him missing in mid-September, they turned over all their firearms to the FBI, but one was missing, a source familiar with the investigation told Fox News. It is unclear if this is the gun that Laundrie used to commit suicide.
“The North Port Police Department has been briefed by the FBI on the soon to be closing of their investigation into the Gabby Petito/Brian Laundrie case,” the police department said in a Friday statement. “We are thankful for the collaboration with the many agencies involved. The dedicated men and women who serve the North Port community have worked tirelessly to help provide answers in this case. We hope that all the efforts will provide some closure for all of those impacted by this tragic event. There will be no further comment at this time.”
Neama Rahmani, a former federal prosecutor and president of West Coast Trial Lawyers, told Fox News that when Laundrie’s remains were found in October, the criminal investigation was essentially over unless law enforcement could determine any other persons of interest.
“The criminal case is done. There’s no prosecuting a dead person,” Neama Ramani, told Fox News at the time. “Both the ATM fraud and the likely murder indictment that was coming — the criminal case goes away.”
Fox News’ Michael Ruiz and Laura Ingle contributed to this report.
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