Laundrie attorney: Brian flew home in middle of trip; parents update timeline he was last seen

Reporter: Zach Oliveri Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:

Gabby Petito’s fiancé, Brian Laundrie, flew home in the middle of their trip before joining her again out west, Laundrie’s attorney, Steve Bertolino, confirmed Tuesday.

We also confirmed a change in the timeline of this case: Laundrie’s parents say they last saw their son a day earlier than they originally reported to the FBI.

Bertolino says Laundrie actually went on a hike on Sept. 13 after he came home from the trip without Gabby instead of Tuesday, Sept. 14.

Bertolino says Laundrie’s parents were mistaken about what happened on those two days. The attorney says the parents and the FBI now agree on the dates.

We spoke with a legal expert who says there is an important distinction between a mistake and not telling the whole story, which could impact Brian’s parents.

“And to be honest with you, they probably wouldn’t tell the truth to begin with,” said Joe Petito, Gabby’s father.

Gabby’s family spoke to Dr. Phil. The family says they had zero communication with Laundrie’s parents.

“A normal parent, when you text someone you’re calling the cops because you can’t find your child, they would reply. No nothing. No response,” Joe said.

According to the family’s lawyer, the Laundries had to clarify some items with the FBI before the timeline changed.

“If it was their faulty memory or if it was relying on information they thought they had, it was simply a mistake. You can’t be prosecuted for a simple mistake,” said Pamella Seay, and FGCU professor of legal studies.

Seay says that distinction is critical for investigators to determine.

“If it was done on purpose, if they purposefully lied to the police, then, that could be considered obstruction of justice,” Seay said.

We also know Laundrie flew back to Florida Aug. 17 during the couple’s road trip, five days after they were pulled over in Moab, Utah.

Laundrie returned to clean out a storage unit. On Sept. 1, he returned home and saw his family without Gabby.

The family went on their camping trip Sept. 6.

All of this while Gabby’s family thought the worst for both.

“We thought Brian was actually missing too,” stepfather Joe Schmitt said.

“I was worried about both of them,” Nicole Schmitt said.

While the world waits for answers, Gabby Petito’s family demands them.

“I’m a dad. I make my kids stand up for their decisions,” Joe said. “I’m your dad, I’ll help you, I’ll walk you through that path. But you’re going to own up to your mistake because that’s what a parent does. I’m sorry.”

Brian Laundrie is wanted by the FBI for using a credit card after Gabby Petito’s death. They spent days searching for him in the Carlton Reserve. They have since scaled that search back there.

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