Brian Laundrie, boyfriend of murdered travel blogger Gabby Petito, died by suicide, family lawyer says

The cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head, according to a report.

November 23, 2021, 5:04 PM

The death of Brian Laundrie, the boyfriend of murdered travel blogger Gabby Petito, has been ruled a suicide, according to the Laundrie family attorney.

Laundrie's remains were found Oct. 21 at the Carlton Reserve in North Port, Florida, in an area that had been submerged in water during a month-long search. The Sarasota County medical examiner did not conclude a manner or cause of death, so Laundrie's remains were brought to a forensic anthropologist for analysis.

Gabby Petito, 22, disappeared during a cross-country trip with her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie, over the summer. The couple had been traveling in a white Ford van.
Courtesy Nichole Schmidt and Joseph Petito

Laundrie's parents, Chris Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie, were informed by the anthropologist that Laundrie's apparently died from a gunshot wound to the head, family attorney Steven Bertolino said in a statement to ABC News Tuesday.

Petito's family has been aware of the circumstances surrounding Laundrie's death but won't be commenting on new details at the request of the United States Attorney’s Office and the Teton County Prosecutor’s Office.

"The family was asked to not make any comments and let the FBI continue their investigation," Petito's family members said in a statement. "The family was also asked to wait for the United States Attorney’s Office to make a determination on whether any additional individuals will be charged. When that determination is made, we will have a statement."

Laundrie disappeared on Sept. 14, three days after Petito was reported missing by her family. He was named a person of interest in her disappearance the next day.

Bodycam footage shows Brian Laundrie speaking with police during Moab City Police department response to an altercation between Laundrie and Gabby Petito in Utah, Aug. 12, 2021.
Moab City Police Department

Petito's remains were found Sept. 19 in Bridger-Teton National Forest in Wyoming, nearly a month after she was last seen in public. She and Laundrie had set off on a cross-country trip to visit national parks in June and documented the trip on social media platforms such as Instagram and YouTube.

Federal and state investigators believe Petito disappeared between Aug. 27 and Aug. 30. Laundrie returned to Florida, to the home the couple shared with his parents, on Sept. 1 with Petito's van, which she had converted for the journey.

In addition to the nationwide search for the couple, Petito's disappearance sparked a national conversation on domestic violence and the preferential treatment of missing white women.

Law enforcement search the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in Florida for Brian Laundrie, Oct. 20, 2021.

Petito's family founded the Gabby Petito Foundation to "address the needs of organizations that support locating missing persons and to provide aid to organizations that assist victims of domestic violence situations."

ABC News' Joshua Hoyos contributed to this report.

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