Brian Laundrie 'Very Much in Control' of Gabby Petito 'the Whole Time,' Ex-FBI Researcher Says
A former FBI behavioral researcher said Brian Laundrie was in control of Gabby Petito based on the body and verbal language between the two.
Dr. Ann Wolbert Burgess, a former FBI Behavioral Science Unit researcher, told Fox News that Laundrie had control over every aspect of his girlfriend's life.
Burgess noted that the 23-year-old Florida fugitive appeared to be "very much in control" of Gabby Petito "the whole time" during their cross-country road trip.
Referring particularly to August 12 bodycam footage from Moab, Utah police, Burgess said Laundrie appeared to have control over Petito's van as he was driving it. She also cited that Laundrie has control over Petito's finances as he reportedly used her credit card.
Burgess said Laundrie has also kept Petito isolated by traveling to remote areas and camping. Burgess also mentioned that Petito's remains were found in an isolated area, something that she said was another way for the Florida fugitive to purportedly "isolate her," even in death, Crime Online reported.
When Moab police officers stopped the couple on August 12 after someone reported a "domestic problem" between the two, a witness said the couple had been arguing over a cellphone, with Laundrie, at one point, taking Petito's phone.
The witness added that Laundrie appeared that he did not want Petito in the van. Another witness said he saw Laundrie slapping Petito.
According to Burgess, Laundrie also continued to call Petito his fiancee several times to the police despite Petito's mother, Nichole Schmidt, telling the media outlets earlier that the couple decided to call the wedding off and go back to dating before they embarked on a road trip.
"To Laundrie this is very, very important, and I think what sets into motion the final days for her," Burgess said of their engagement.
Burgess said to Laundrie to be known as Petito's fiance was very important, adding that she thinks it's what sets into motion the final days for Petito.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Brian Laundrie
On Friday, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said he hopes Brian Laundrie will be apprehended and brought to justice if a court finds him guilty of a crime.
According to another Fox News report, DeSantis said it's "a little disappointing" that authorities still do not have Laundrie's whereabouts.
The Florida governor noted that Laundrie is "obviously somebody that would be a suspect" in this kind of scenario.
"Clearly there were things going on here with the family. So I hope that he's apprehended and brought to justice if, in fact, he was the one that is guilty of this," DeSantis said.
"Because it's a really sad thing... this is a very beautiful young girl with a lot of potential and a lot of people really loved her a lot. To see this happen really is heartbreaking," he added.
Manhunt for Gabby Petito's Fiance
Law enforcement continued to search for Brian Laundrie at the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in North Port on Friday.
According to the North Port Police Department, they were also conducting "special response team training" while looking for Gabby Petito's fiance.
WFLA reported that officers were seen carrying large rifles into the wooded area about a mile from the reserve's entrance. Yellow police tape also went up at the entrance to the reserve.
The activity comes after some crews from Pasco County, including a K9-unit dog to help search for human remains, inspected the Carlton Reserve on Thursday.
This week officially marked one month since Brian Laundrie's parents said they last saw him. His parents said they last saw him on September 13, leaving home to go to the Carlton Reserve area for a hike.
Laundrie's parents announced that he was missing on September 17. Petito disappeared on a cross-country road trip with Laundrie.
The couple was traveling to Oregon when the YouTuber stopped communicating with her family in Wyoming in late August.
Laundrie was named a person of interest by North Port police after returning home on September 1 or 10 days before Petito was reported missing by her family.
Petito's body was found at the Spread Creek Dispersed Campground near Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on September 19.
On Tuesday, Teton County, Wyoming coroner Brent Blue said Gabby Petito was strangled to death by "human force," and the manner of death was homicide.
Petito's parents headed to Wyoming Wednesday to recover her remains. The Teton County coroner has already released Petito's remains to a local mortuary for cremation.
Petito's family is also expected to meet with law enforcement in Wyoming to brief them on the latest update in the case before they return to New York this weekend with Petito's ashes.
The FBI has already issued a federal arrest warrant for Brian Laundrie but over debit card fraud.
This article is owned by Latin Post
Written by: Mary Webber
WATCH: Brian Laundrie Search: Police Tape Put up at Nature Reserve Entrance, Law Enforcement Seen in Park - From WFLA News Channel 8
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