The FBI has been looking for Brian Laundrie for over three weeks, and thus yet they have only a handful of tips from all over the country.
Mr. Laundrie vanished after going on a trek in the Carlton Reserve in the North Port, Florida area two days after his girlfriend, Gabby Petito, went missing.
His family became concerned when he didn’t check in for many days after returning from a cross-country road trip without her.
Since then, the Carlton Reserve has been searched almost daily, but no signs of Mr. Laundrie’s existence have been uncovered.
Mr. Laundrie’s family, their attorney, and the Petitos all think he is alive, as do law enforcement officials. However, what will happen if he is never located?
Is it Possible to File Criminal Charges Against his Parents?
Mr. Laundrie was charged with bank fraud for allegedly using Ms. Petito’s debit card after he left her in Wyoming and, presumably, after she had died. This was the only charge to come out of the Gabby Petito case up until this point.
The Laundrie family has not been charged, and it is uncertain if they ever will be.
They would have been within their rights to help their son in whatever way they saw fit up until the warrant for Mr. Laundrie’s arrest was issued.
There is a possibility that the Laundries will be charged with aiding a fugitive if it becomes out that they provided assistance to their son after a warrant had been issued. If they haven’t, though, the prosecutor has no apparent grounds upon which to bring charges.
Will an absentee trial for Mr. Laundrie be possible?
It has been speculated that if Mr. Laundrie cannot be discovered and murder charges are filed against him, he may be tried for her death in his absence.
U.S. law provides that a defendant who absconds during trial may be tried and convicted without ever having to set foot in court, per Rule 43 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure.
To yet, however, Mr. Laundrie has not been apprehended or given a court date, so he cannot be tried in his absence.
“The trial in absentia of a defendant who is not present at the commencement of trial” was ruled illegal by the Supreme Court in Crosby v. United States in 1993.
Mr. Laundrie cannot be tried until he is located and brought in for prosecution.
Have there been any Wanted Criminals who have Eluded Capture for Good?
Mr. Laundrie is hardly the first criminal suspect to avoid arrest. Mr. Laundrie has not been on the run nearly as long as some other fugitives who have managed to avoid apprehension.
Seth Ferranti, who was on the run for two years before being arrested and convicted on drug trafficking charges, was wanted for nonviolent offences.
American race car driver John Lee Paul, who was last seen on his yacht in Thailand, is wanted for questioning in connection with the disappearance of his ex-girlfriend. This year, 2001, he failed to appear for.
After the April 2001 explosion at his Scottsdale, Arizona home, in which his wife and two daughters were killed, Robert William Fisher vanished. He disappeared after being accused of setting off a natural gas explosion to kill his family.
There are dozens of fugitives still at large, but the most well-known is probably DB Cooper, who, in 1971, hijacked a Northwest Orient Airlines flight and then parachuted out of the plane somewhere over the Pacific Northwest with $200,000 (equivalent to about $1.3 million in today’s dollars) that he had extorted from the airline.
There has been no discovery of Mr. Cooper or his wealth.