Brian Laundrie DNA Samples Obtained by FBI for Testing in Gabby Petito Case

FBI agents retrieved DNA samples from Brian Laundrie's family home on Sunday. Laundrie has been missing since mid-September and is the person of interest in the homicide of his fiancée Gabby Petito.

Laundrie returned home alone from a cross-country trip with Petito, 22, on September 1, before she was declared missing by her family 10 days later. Laundrie has refused to talk to the police and has not been seen since September 14, after telling his family in Florida that he was going to go on a hike in a national park. Petito's body was found in a Wyoming national park on September 19, while Laundrie was in hiding.

A lawyer for Laundrie's family confirmed to NBC News that federal investigators returned to their family home in Florida on Sunday to retrieve personal items for the purposes of matching DNA. The search for Laundrie escalated last week when the 23-year-old man was officially named as a person of interest.

After telling his family that he was going for a hike in Florida's Carlton Reserve, Laundrie has not been seen since September 14 and was reported missing by them three days later, on September 17. Dozens of officers are taking part in an intense search for him at the 24,000-acre nature reserve. It is not clear how long they are intending to continue their search.

Search for Brian Laundrie continues in the Carlton Reserve Friday. pic.twitter.com/eqxVH3xpRR

— North Port Police (@NorthPortPolice) September 24, 2021

Laundrie's federal arrest warrant does not implicate him in the death of Petito, 22, but it does mean law enforcement have the power to hold him on a charge if they find him. Laundrie was charged with debit card fraud on September 24, and the indictment alleges he withdrew or spent more than $1,000 using a Capital One card after Petito went missing.

On Sunday, as a vigil was taking place for Petito in Long Island, New York, FBI officials were spotted going to Laundrie's family home in Blue Point.

"The FBI requested some personal items belonging to Brian Laundrie to assist them with DNA matching and Brian's parents provided the FBI with what they could," a lawyer for Laundrie's family said in a statement.

Petito was first reported missing on September 11, more than two months after leaving for a cross-country road trip and 10 days after Laundrie returned home without her.

On September 19, investigators said they discovered a body that had an appearance "consistent" with the description of Petito on the outskirts of the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. The FBI confirmed the body of Gabrielle "Gabby" Petito was found on Sunday by law enforcement agents and the cause of death was ruled to be a homicide.

The couple set out in a white van in July on a cross-country trek visiting national parks, but Laundrie returned home alone in the van on September 1. Petito's family grew concerned that they hadn't heard from her and filed a missing persons report on September 11. Records show that her cell phone had been off since August 27.

Brian Laundrie, officer and Gabby Petito composite.
A still from police camera footage showing Brian Laundrie and Gabrielle “Gabby” Petito talking to an officer after being pulled over near the entrance to Arches National Park on August 12, 2021. Agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) retrieved DNA samples from Laundie’s family home on Sunday. Moab Police / North Port Police