TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – As this case continues to play out, yet another question remains: Now that a body has been discovered, does Gabby Petito’s fiancé go from a person of interest to a suspect? And, if so, when?
8 On Your Side spoke at length with a former federal and state prosecutor who believes an arrest warrant is written and ready to go.
He says it’s only a matter of time.
“Oh, I don’t think there’s any question, he is the primary suspect and probably the only one,” said attorney Stephen Crawford.
From a legal standpoint, many are, indeed, wondering – will investigators classify Brian Laundrie’s as a suspect after the discovery of what the FBI believes to be the body of Gabby Petito?
Will her fiance be no longer be just a person of interest?
“I don’t think there’s any question that he’s no longer considered just a person of interest. I think there’s an arrest warrant. I think it’s sealed, but I think it’s out there,” Crawford told us.
Stephen Crawford spent years as a prosecutor, and he believes Gabby’s fiancé has already been declared a suspect. Wherever Brian Laundrie is finally found, Crawford says that the law enforcement agency will take him into custody immediately.
“Quite frankly, everybody’s going to want him, but in this country, but a person is prosecuted in the venue where the crime occurred,” Crawford said Monday night.
Crawford also told 8 On Your Side when the medical examiner’s office in Wyoming comes back with a report on the official cause of death, that will dictate where the case will be prosecuted.
The question is – did Gabby die in Wyoming or Utah?
Investigators say they’re looking at all evidence in this case and all angles, including the possibility that Gabby may have died in one place, while her body was discovered in another.
“Well, venue issues can get complicated, but it’s not important,” Crawford explained. “It’s not important for the state to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt as to where it occurred. The question is, who did it?”
The medical examiner’s office will perform an autopsy on Tuesday.