Chris and Roberta Laundrie — who remained mum after their son went missing into the Florida wilderness on the heels of Gabby Petito’s disappearance and subsequent murder — now say that their son was “very upset” when he left the family home and disappeared.
Authorities on Thursday determined that the human remains discovered in a remote area of a Florida nature reserve are that of Brian. A cause of death has yet to be announced and may take some time to determine due to the condition of the body.
Brian was the only person of interest in the strangulation murder of Petito, whose remains were discovered on Sept. 19 in the Teton-Bridger National Forest in Wyoming.
What are the details?
The parents of Brian Laundrie have finally broken their silence on their son’s disappearance and apparent death.
In a statement on the news, family attorney Steven Bertolino said, “I can tell you Brian was very upset when he left.”
According to reports, Chris felt helpless when he couldn’t stop his son from fleeing the family home.
“Chris conveyed to me several times he wished he wouldn’t have let him go, but he couldn’t stop him,” Bertolino added. “Brian is a grown man. He was 22 years old. He wanted to walk out the door, he was entitled to walk out the door.”
According to a report from Fox News, Brian was “grieving” in the days before he vanished.
Chris admitted that his son was upset when he left for the Sept. 13 hike — which took place two days after Petito was reported missing — from which he never returned.
On Thursday, Bertolino told Fox News that he “immediately informed the FBI that his client had failed to come home.”
“North Port PD was under the assumption that Brian was home, and so was the FBI when they got a tip on Friday that Brian was in Tampa, and they wanted to meet with us on Friday,” Bertolino said. “I was shocked and said, ‘That’s good. You found him in Tampa,’ and they said, ‘What do you mean? I thought he’s at the house.’ I said, ‘No, I told you the other day he never came home.'”
Bertolino did not clarify about Brian’s mental or emotional state when he left the family home on Sept. 13, or what he was grieving over.
Bertolino also added that the Laundrie family is suffering a great loss, comparable to that of the Petito family.
“These are parents that are suffering,” he said. “Now, I understand that whatever happened or whatever didn’t happen … this is tragic for two families. And anybody with a child, and anybody with a sense of humanity can understand the frustration that both families feel on that point.”