Report: Dog the Bounty Hunter Believes Brian Laundrie Is Alive — and That He’s About to Catch Him
Duane "Dog the Bounty Hunter" Chapman says he's closing in on missing man Brian Laundrie, who is evading police capture. Per TMZ, Dog has been chasing a lead that tells him Laundrie is alive (as of Tuesday night, Sept. 28), and the bounty hunter is searching the location he believes Laundrie to be hiding.
Laundrie had been traveling the country with his fiancee Gabby Petito in a van over the summer, but returned to his parents' home in North Port, Fla., on Sept. 1, in Petito's van, without Petito. She was found dead near Grand Teton National Park on Sept. 19, and her death ruled a homicide.
"Here we go. The search now is really on," Dog says in a video from "the island," shared to social media Wednesday afternoon. "This would be and could be a perfect spot for him to hide ... not too many people out here."
Last week, the FBI issued an arrest warrant for Laundrie for bank card fraud. He's a person of interest in the disappearance and death of Petito.
Laundrie was last seen on Sept. 14, but a tip led Dog to a campground 75 miles from the Laundrie family's home in Florida this week. He now believes he's close to capturing the suspect and is searching nearby Egmont Key. TMZ says Dog is armed with a search team that includes ground experts and boat crews. On Wednesday afternoon, a K-9 unit was brought in to assist.
Around 7PM ET Wednesday night, Team Dog made the following update via social media:
On behalf of Duane “Dog” Chapman, we are making every effort to communicate general information that does not compromise the investigation while still keeping members of the media informed.
Dog and team are still searching an island near Fort De Soto Park in Pinellas County, Florida. K-9 teams have been brought in to assist.
The search will continue into the evening.
Dog is so grateful to everyone assisting and for the thousands of tips. Keep the tips coming in to 833-TELL-DOG.
“It doesn’t matter who catches him,” said Dog this afternoon. “We just want to do everything we can to help bring Brian in safely.”
While the recently-married reality television star has found no conclusive evidence that Laundrie is on the island where his search is taking place — at least not that he's publicizing — Fox News shows that Dog did uncover a fresh campsite with a disposed-of can of Monster Energy drink.
His discoveries are being shared with local law enforcement as he works.
This is a developing story.