FBI police car (illustration)
FBI police car (illustration)iStock

The FBI on Thursday confirmed that human remains found in a Florida nature preserve are those of Brian Laundrie, a person of interest in the death of his girlfriend, 22-year-old blogger Gabby Petito, while the couple was on a cross-country road trip.

The remains, a backpack and notebook believed to belong to Laundrie were discovered Wednesday in a Florida wilderness park, said the FBI, according to The Associated Press.

The FBI’s Denver office said in a news release that a comparison of dental records confirmed that the remains were Laundrie.

The discovery of the remains concluded a massive search involving federal, state and local law enforcement that began shortly after Laundrie disappeared on September 14, two weeks after the 23-year-old returned alone to his parents’ home in North Port, Florida.

Petito’s family reported her missing on September 11, launching a search that garnered worldwide media attention and focused largely on the Carlton Reserve wilderness park near the Laundrie home.

The body of Petitio, 22, was found on September 19 on the edge of Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park, which the couple had visited. The coroner there concluded she died of strangulation.

The couple was stopped August 12 by police in Moab, Utah, after they had a physical altercation, but no charges were filed.

Laundrie returned home alone on September 1 and was reported missing after telling his parents that he was going for a hike in the Carlton Reserve.

Before disappearing, Laundrie had refused to speak with investigators and retained a lawyer.