Gabby Petito Case: Florida Sheriff Speaks on Investigation, Says He Would’ve Detained Brian Laundrie Immediately

by Kati Michelle

Some of the criticisms towards the investigation of Gabby Petito’s homicide are aimed at the officials’ handling of the case. While a lot of the criticism comes from the general public, several prior professionals within the field have also spoken up. A former FBI Agent, for example, recently stated that she thinks the Laundrie family aided Brian in his fleeing, but the manhunt is close to its end.

Now, a Florida Sheriff has something to say. If his team were on the case, he says a manhunt wouldn’t have even been necessary. Instead, he would’ve detained Brian Laundrie immediately.

Sheriff Grady Judd Speaks on the Handling of the Gabby Petito Case

As new bodycam footage from the Utah incident comes to light, speculation into Gabby Petito’s relationship with prior partner Brian Laundrie increased tenfold. Do the signs point to domestic abuse? Was the police chief’s leave justified in the aftermath?

While Sheriff Grady Judd doesn’t speak to that directly, he does offer some insight. Sheriff Judd oversees Florida’s Polk County, making him a little closer to North Port than most. He firmly believes that the Gabby Petito investigation includes a series of preventable fumbles. He doesn’t understand why the case has been handled the way it has. While holding a press release concerning another case, he let these comments slip:

“At this sheriff’s office, when he showed up with her car and she was no place to be found, we would have never let him out of our custody that day.” Moreover, he said, “I can tell you that according to Florida law, when she was the victim of domestic violence originally, he would’ve been arrested.” He went on to add: “Other than that, I’m not sure where their investigation is.”

Still, he says to take all that with a grain of salt. His department does not bear any connection to the case or behind-the-scenes details of it. He said he could only “speculate based upon news reports.”

No Updates to Report on the Search for Brian Laundrie

While the FBI’s most recent visit back at the Laundrie house seems to point towards movement in the investigation, the search for Brian Laundrie continues. North Port Police and FBI keep their position at the Carlton Reserve. Meanwhile, Dog the Bounty Hunter sticks to his leads at De Soto. Still, the two searches remain separate and distanced. Dog reports no sharing of intel between them.

Perhaps this will change now that the campground handed over their surveillance footage to the FBI. Perhaps something will also come out of the clues Dog’s team thinks they found. Regardless, the “ruthless” bounty hunter says this doesn’t end until Brian Laundrie is caught– and hopefully alive at that. For now, there are no new updates to report.