SALT LAKE CITY — UPDATE: The lawyer for the Laundrie family says Brian Laundrie is now missing.
See the full statement below:
"Be advised that the whereabouts of Brian Laundrie are currently unknown. The FBI is currently at the Laundrie residence removing property to assist in locating Brian. As of now, the FBI is now looking for both Gabby and Brian."
According to the North Port Police Department, they and the Federal Bureau of Investigations are currently searching for 23-year-old Brian Laundrie of North Port. Police say the attorney for the Laundrie family called FBI investigators Friday night indicating the family would like to talk about the disappearance of their son, and that the family now claims that they have not seen Brian since Tuesday of this week.
According to North Port Police, Brian is described as:
-Short brown hair
-trimmed facial hair
-Last seen wearing a hiking bag with a waist strap.
"We understand the community’s frustration, we are frustrated too. For six days, the North Port Police Department and the FBI have been pleading with the family to contact investigators regarding Brian’s Fiancé Gabby Petito. Friday is the first time they have spoken with investigators in detail. It is important to note that while Brian is a person of interest in Gabby’s disappearance, he is not wanted for a crime. We are not currently working a crime investigation. We are now working a multiple missing person investigations," said a statement from North Port Police.
North Port Police were at the Laundrie home for several hours Friday evening. Police say they were speaking with the Laundrie family at their request. There was a large gathering of people outside the home demanding answers while police continued to ask for calm.
Finding Gabby Petito without fiancé Brian Laundrie’s cooperation will be extremely difficult according to law enforcement experts in Utah.
Gabby wasn’t reported missing until two weeks after the 22-year-old was last seen in Salt Lake City. The man who might know where she is, isn’t talking.
“Let’s just be clear. He looks guilty as hell,” said former Salt Lake Co. Sheriff and Moab Police Chief Jim Winder.
- 'Tell us where Gabby is located': Petito's family pleads to fiance's family to bring her home safe
- Police name boyfriend person of interest in disappearance of Gabby Petito
- Family of missing North Port woman says boyfriend refuses to answer questions
- ‘My only daughter is missing’: Father of woman who disappeared in Utah pleads for help
- Police in Utah responded to incident involving missing woman, boyfriend
While Brian Laundrie is within his legal rights to stay quiet, Winder tells Scripps station KSTU it is detrimental to the investigation.
“This situation where Mr. Laundrie is essentially clammed up poses a problem of significance for law enforcement. If he continues to take the path that he does, they are going to be in a real tough position,” said Winder.
“It’s good advice. But again, depending which side you’re on, it’s frustrating,” said retired Unified Police deputy chief Chris Bertram.
With Brian refusing to talk, physical evidence becomes critical. Winder believes investigators are heavily focused on the digital footprint the couple left behind, especially cell phones.
“Until there is some physical evidence, to point in that direction, this thing can linger for a long time,” Winder said.
As the case generates national attention, Bertram believes the spotlight is helping investigators make up for lost time.
“I think people who were in the area, in the Tetons from say the 25th to the 30th, they are going to go back and search their minds, search their videos and they will be looking at their pictures to see if there is anything there that helps them,” said Bertram.
The FBI said no piece of information is too small or inconsequential. They’re asking anyone with pictures, video or information about Gabby to let them know.
Authorities are asking anyone with information about the case to contact the FBI's tip line at 1-800-CALLFBI (225-5324).