Steven Bertolino Brian Laundrie lawyer confirms family camped at Florida state park days before Gabby reported missing, but insists they returned home.
In his statement to the media, Steven Bertolino insists that all three family members returned home following their trip to Florida’s Foto De Soto Park in Pinellas County.
The attorney’s statement rebuffs recent claims by reality TV star Duane ‘Dog the Bounty Hunter’ Chapman that Brian went on the run after his parents left the state park without him.
‘The family camped from 09-06 to 09-07 and they all left the park,’ Bertolino said.
Chapman, who joined the manhunt for Laundrie over the weekend, said he confirmed that the Laundries were at the park camping on two occasions after Brian returned home from a cross-country trip without Petito.
Camping while your son’s girlfriend fails to return home with him from a road trip?
Chapman said the three were at the park on Sept. 1-3 and Sept. 6-8, and claimed Chris and Roberta Laundrie left the campground by themselves, apparently leaving their son behind.
On Monday, Bertolino responded to mounting speculation that the parents helped their son flee in the wake of Petito’s disappearance and disclosed death.
‘Chris and Roberta Laundrie do not know where Brian is,’ Bertolino said in a statement. ‘They are concerned about Brian and hope the FBI can locate him.’
Adding, ‘The speculation by the public and some in the press that the parents assisted Brian in leaving the family home or in avoiding arrest on a warrant that was issued after Brian had already been missing for several days is just wrong.’
Authorities have been searching for Brian miles away at the 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve near the family home in North Port for nearly two weeks.
Petito, 22, a Long Island, NY native, disappeared late last month during the couple’s road trip. The missing girlfriend’s remains were found in a Wyoming campground on Sept. 11.
A Wyoming coroner declared her death a homicide three days later, but authorities have not revealed the cause of death or the full results of the autopsy as concern sets in her body may have incurred rapid deterioration making it difficult to pinpoint the actual cause of death.
Gabby’s body is still at the Teton County coroner’s office.
The grieving Petito family, meanwhile, called on Brian to turn himself in.
‘The Laundries did not help us find Gabby. They sure aren’t going to help us find Brian,’ attorney Richard Stafford said. ‘For Brian, we are asking you to turn yourself in.’
Meanwhile, Chapman plans to open a home base in Central Florida for the manhunt, as the famed reality bounter is intent on finding Laundrie who is believed to have been the last person to see Gabby alive.