Chapman het Saterdag aangekondig dat hy die soektog na Laundrie betree, en wenke het vinnig ingestroom. He told Fox News he received a tip on Monday that Laundrie’s parents spent the night in Fort De Soto Park with their son twice in early September from Sept. 1-3 and Sept. 6-8.
“They were registered, went through the gate. They’re on camera. They were here,” he told Fox News exclusively on Monday evening. “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 later 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 Fox News Digital reporter overheard a park worker say investigators had checked surveillance video on the grounds.
Conditions within park are “much easier” than some others, namely the T. Mabry Carlton Reserve, where local police and sheriff’s deputies have spent days combing through the dense, swampy terrain, Chapman told Fox News.
Fort De Soto Park is located in Pinellas County and is about 75 miles away from the Laundries’ home on Wabasso Avenue. It spans more than 1,130 acres and consists of five keys.
The tip gives renewed hope that authorities might soon reach a conclusion to what has become a costly weeks-long search for Laundrie and a quest for answers that has extended from coast to coast. The exhaustive manhunt that has extended nationwide and garnered massive attention.
Laundrie and 22-year-old Petito embarked on a cross-country journey in mid-June in a converted white Ford Transit van with the plan to visit national parks along the way. Hulle het jare tevore begin uitgaan nadat hulle by hul plaaslike ontmoetings was Long Island, N.Y.. hoërskool en het verhuis na North Port, Florida, om by Laundrie se ouers te woon.
Op Sept.. 1, months after they began their trip, Laundrie returned to the North Port home in the couple’s van, maar sonder Petito, amptenare gesê. Die jong vrou is eers as vermis aangemeld 10 dae later, op Sept.. 11, toe haar ma 'n polisieverslag in Suffolk County ingedien het, N.Y.. Die polisie het beslag gelê op die bakkie uit die wasserye’ home on Sept. 11.
Laundrie was subsequently named a person of interest in Petito’s disappearance, and on Thursday, the FBI issued an arrest warrant for bank card fraud. Authorities alleged he used someone’s Capital One Bank card and the personal identification number during the time when Petito was missing. Neither investigators nor a spokesperson for Petito’s family have said whether the card belonged to Petito.
Fox News recently obtained the missing persons’ report for Petito, in which her mother, Nichole Schmidt, stated that her daughter was last seen at 7 am. op Aug. 30 by Grand Teton Nasionale Park. Schmidt wrote in the report that her Long Island home was a “probable destination.”
But Laundrie also subsequently went missing, his parents claimed through their attorney.
After the Petito’s missing persons’ report was filed on Sept. 11, Laundrie would not cooperate with the police investigation, amptenare gesê. Die prokureur van die wasserye het 'n verklaring op Sept. 14, waarin hy aangekondig het dat hy sy kliënte aangeraai het om te bly “in die agtergrond.” Die gesin onthul drie dae later dat hulle hom sedert September nie gesien het nie. 14.
Charlene Guthrie, wat reg oorkant die straat van die Laundrie -gesin woon, told Fox News she saw Brian Laundrie mowing the lawn, riding his bike with his mother and appearing to go camping with his parents in the days after he arrived alone. Petito had previously been living with the family at their Noordelike hawe, Florida, huis toe.
Vriende, family and the public paid their respects during a Sunday ceremony on Long Island.
Speaking during the service, Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, called his daughter “the most amazing person I’ve ever met.”
“I want you to take a look at these pictures, and I want you to be inspired by Gabby,” he said at the service. “If there’s a trip you guys want to take, take it now. Do it now while you have the time. If there is a relationship you’re in that might not be the best thing for you, leave it now.”
Fox News’ Paul Best contributed to this report.