The search for Brian Laundrie — whose fiancée, Gabrielle Petito, went missing under the most suspicious and tragic of circumstances — embodies white privilege in every way, fashion and form.
The FBI said Sunday that remains believed to belong to Petito were found in a camping site in Wyoming. We previously reported the 22-year-old and 23-year-old Laundrie left New York on July 2 for a monthslong cross-country trip that was interrupted on Aug. 12, when police in Moab, Utah, responded to a report of a “domestic problem” after the couple had “some sort of argument” that resulted in the couple allegedly getting physical with each other, which the cops handled, not by making any arrests, but by separating the two and even putting Laundrie up in a hotel for the night. (I could mention the irony of how Petito might still be alive and well if not for white privilege in policing, but I’ll lead that alone for now.
According to the New York Times, FBI agent Charles Jones said the remains were found in the Spread Creek Dispersed Camping Area, which is located in the Bridger-Teton National Forest on the east boundary of Grand Teton National Park. While Jones added that the forensic investigation to confirm the identity of the remains hadn’t been completed yet, Jones said they were “consistent with a description of Gabrielle Petito.”
“On behalf of the F.B.I. personnel and our partners, I would like to extend sincere, sincere and heartfelt condolences to Gabby’s family,” he said at a news conference. “As every parent can imagine, this is an incredibly difficult time for the family and friends. Our thoughts and prayers are with them. We ask that you all respect their privacy as they mourn the loss of their daughter.”
The North Port police in Florida, where the couple lived, also posted a statement of condolences on Twitter.
Petito’s father, Joseph Petito, also responded to the heartbreaking news via Twitter.
Meanwhile, Laundrie is who police listed as the victim of the couple’s physical dispute that ended in zero arrests, according to the Times.
As previously reported, returned to his house in North Port, Fla., on Sept. 1 without his bride-to-be 10 days before Petito’s disappearance was reported.
Steven Bertolino, the Laundrie family attorney, told ABC 7 that Laundrie left his home with a backpack last Tuesday and he hasn’t been seen since.
According to ABC, the authorities have received an outpouring of tips as to Laundrie’s whereabouts, including that of Miranda Baker, who said in a Tik Tok video she and her boyfriend picked up Laundrie when he was hitchhiking around Teton Park on Aug. 29.
“He offered to pay us like 200 dollars to give him a ride like 10 miles so that was kind of weird…without his fiancé,” Baker said in the video.
With all the national attention Petito’s disappearance has gotten—which is certainly a lot more than the thousands of cases involving missing Black women, Black girls and people of color have received—it’s almost incomprehensible that Laundrie hasn’t been located yet.