Brian Laundrie search to be more targeted based on intelligence as rancher says Gabby Petito's fiancé is NOT in reserve
COPS will target the search to find Gabby Petito’s missing fiancé Brian Laundrie based on intelligence as a cattle rancher speculates that he may not be hiding in a 25,000-acre Florida nature reserve.
Detectives have scoured the Carlton Reserve in Sarasota since last weekend after the 23-year-old reportedly told his parents that he was going for a hike.
Laundrie was reported missing on September 17 and cops are yet to find Petito’s missing fiancé.
Cops are expected to scale back the search efforts in the coming days.
Josh Taylor, of North Port Police Department, told Fox: “The FBI is now leading the search. I’m told, it will be scaled back and targeted based on intelligence.
“Hopefully water will lower in areas hard to currently access.”
Officers from NPPD will still be involved in the investigation.
Experienced rancher Alan McEwen has cast doubt that Laundrie is hiding in the vast Carlton Reserve.
He told Fox News: “Unless he’s got a butt like a duck and can float, he’s not in there.
“I’ve been in the woods in and out all my life. I have learned a lot in my life, and one thing I know is no one is gonna survive out there for two weeks on foot.”
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But, McEwen doesn’t believe that Laundrie died in the wilderness as no buzzards have been circulating.
He said: “Anything dead you find in the woods, you’re gonna look up, you’re gonna see buzzards flying like crazy.
“No buzzards, no body is my theory. And I haven’t seen any buzzards flying.”
The rancher said Laundrie could be anywhere as the search to find Laundrie enters its ninth day.
The Carlton Reserve is a 25,000-acre park and is home to venomous rattlesnakes, alligators, coyotes, and bobcats.
Panthers and black bears have also been spotted prowling in the reserve.
It is around 15 miles from the Laundries' home in North Port.
Footage uploaded on Twitter by North Port Police shows teams on swamp buggies navigating the treacherous marshes.
Cops have documented the search as officers have been snapped wading through muddy waters.
Sheriffs have been pictured moving along pathways into thick undergrowth while carrying machetes.
Cops from neighboring counties are using Dragonfish drone technology in a bid to find Laundrie, according to WFTS.
Josh Taylor said the nature reserve is "unforgiving at times".
He added: "This is dangerous work for the search crews as they are wading through gator and snake-infested swamps and flooded hiking and biking trails."
Mark Burrow, a local survival expert, thinks Laundrie is "living in hell" if he's in the Florida wilderness, The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports.
He warned that starting a fire would be "impossible" due to the heavy rains that have hit the nature reserve in recent days.
'LIVING IN HELL'
Former LA County Sheriff’s deputy Mike Hadsell suspects that Laundrie is “probably not” in the nature reserve.
In an exclusive interview with DailyMail.com, he said: “I can accurately estimate they are spending $200,000 a day on this search.”
Hadsell has spoken with insiders pursuing Laundrie and they reportedly told him that they’ve come up dry so far.
He said: “Any time he would move, especially in the Carlton, he would leave trails because you sink in the mud.
“There would be evidence that somebody has been moving through there. And any K9 will pick that up.”
He claims that there has been no scent of Laundrie or prints.
Meanwhile, two FBI agents visited Laundrie’s parents' home on Sunday and asked them for some of his items that may help with DNA matching.
Their family lawyer Steve Bertolino told Fox News: “The FBI requested some personal items belonging to Brian Laundrie to assist them with DNA matching and Brian’s parents provided the FBI with what they could.”
The agents were pictured leaving the home and carrying a brown bag.
Laundrie returned to Florida on September 1 – weeks after starting his cross-country road trip with his 22-year-old fiancée.
Cops seized the couple’s camper van on September 11 – the day Gabby was reported missing by her parents.
Laundrie was named as a “person of interest” – days before cops and FBI detectives found Gabby's remains at Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming.
Meanwhile, search efforts to find Laundrie have been ramped up after he was reported missing.
Dog the Bounty Hunter has since joined the search and said he's getting phone calls to his anonymous tip line every two or three minutes.
He said: "A lot of the information he's received points to the Appalachian Trail.
"If there’s anywhere out there that looks the hottest, that could be the area.
"I think he’s young enough, not an experienced criminal, but what is his greatest experience? Outdoorsman – that’s what he does the best.
"I don’t think he can shoplift, live on the run, live in cheap hotels. On a one-to-10 he’s probably a six, compared to the outdoorsmen and some of the guys I’ve captured."
Laundrie’s social media posts have revealed he was researching supplies for a stint in the wild that could help him survive for months.
He shared images of ways to pack a backpack and camping hacks to his Pinterest page in the months before he vanished.
Gabby's best friend said Brian had the ability to survive in the wild for months.
Rose Davis told DailyMail.com: "I know he lived in the Appalachians for what I believe was three months, and he did it by himself, so I know he's skilled at it.”
There have been several alleged sightings of Laundrie in Florida and Alabama but most have led to a dead end.
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