Brian Laundrie Search: North Carolina Citizen Reports Potential Sighting of Fugitive

by Chris Haney

On Wednesday night, someone called in a sighting of Brian Laundrie in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, but the potential lead ended up being a false alarm.

A North Carolina citizen spotted who they thought may be Gabby Petito’s fiancé who is a fugitive from the law. Laundrie is the main person of interest in Petito’s sudden disappearance and death.

The couple went on a van tour of America’s national parks over the summer. However, Laundrie abruptly returned home to Florida without his other half in the middle of their months-long trip. Authorities eventually found Petito’s body in Grand Teton National Park on Sept. 19, but Laundrie has been missing for weeks. Ever since, a massive FBI-led manhunt in Central Florida has ensued to find Laundrie.

Although his whereabouts are still unknown, officials have received numerous calls about potential sightings of the fugitive. After Rocky Mount police got a call about someone who looked like Brian Laundrie, local authorities immediately investigated.

“White male subject wearing a light grey t-shirt… walking toward 301… advised that he looked like Brian Laundrie,” a dispatcher said over the scanner yesterday evenin, according to a FOX News report. 

Officers who followed up on the tip reported that they talked to the person in question. Yet the tip turned out to be a false alarm. 

“There was a citizen passerby that spotted an individual that matched the description of Brian Laundrie. Officers went to the area and located the individual that they were referring to. We can positively identify that individual was not Brian Laundrie,” Cpl. Ricky Jackson told the outlet.

Further Sightings of Brian Laundrie Reported in North Carolina

The call in Rocky Mount, North Carolina is the newest of a series of sightings from citizens thinking they spotted Brian Laundrie. Multiple false alarms in North Carolina have occurred while people have called in sightings in other states as well.

Earlier this month, hiker Dennis Davis said he spotted Laundrie around the Appalachian Trail near the Tennessee-North Carolina state line. Davis said he is “100%” sure the person he witnessed is Brian Laundrie. In fact, the hiker has met with FBI agents about the supposed sighting on Oct. 2.

Authorities in western North Carolina around the Appalachian Trail have received numerous reports in recent weeks involving Laundrie. The Watauga County and Haywood County Sheriff’s Offices have both investigated multiple reported sightings of the fugitive. On Oct. 4, the Haywood County sheriff addressed the numerous sightings.

“The Haywood County Sheriff’s Office has received a number of calls regarding the sighting of Brian Laundrie over the past several days, each one being investigated thoroughly and areas of concern searched, but all to no avail,” the Haywood County sheriff explained. 

For now, the search continues for Brian Laundrie’s whereabouts. Officials are still searching in Florida, but experts are open to the possibility that the fugitive could be in another state by now as well.