A TikTok user and friends searching the area where Brian Laundrie’s remains were found last week have discovered what appears to be a water bottle belonging to his murdered partner Gabby Petito.
The group of hikers told Fox News they were walking through Florida’s Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park on Sunday (local time) when they made the disturbing discovery alongside a pair of men’s socks and bone fragments.
TikTok user @chroniclesofolivia said in a video posted to her account that she alerted police after she found the items close to where Laundrie’s parents found their son’s white dry bag, which led officers to his remains.
She said officers collected the bones to determine if they are animal or human but left the water bottle from a Seattle REI Co-op behind.
What appears to be the exact same bottle can be seen in Laundrie and Petito’s van during a YouTube video posted by the couple during their US road trip.
"I feel it was very negligent, it was irresponsible," the TikTok user, Olivia, told Fox News reporter Michael Ruiz.
Hikers this morning found a Nalgene water bottle from a Seattle REI Co-op near bone fragments in a #Myakkahatchee Park clearing. It's also by where Chris and Roberta Laundrie found #BrianLaundrie's white dry bag earlier this week. Their son's remains were found nearby Wednesday. pic.twitter.com/JQtpOfeX9y
— Michael Ruiz (@mikerreports) October 24, 2021
"They were more interested in the bones — but they knew they were animal bones."
Olivia said she took the water bottle with her and will now return it to Petito's parents.
A lawyer for the Petito family, Richard Stafford, said he was confused as to why police wouldn’t also collect the water bottle as evidence.
"It looks like hers," he said.
"We have a picture that's from before she left for her trip. It looks like the bottle. I don't know why it would be left there. It boggles my mind,” he said.
Police did not respond to the publication’s request for comment.
Brian Laundrie's cause of death remains unknown
The initial autopsy on Laundrie’s remains has not uncovered a cause of his death and a more intensive examination will be done, a Laundrie family lawyer said on Monday (local time).
His skeletal remains were positively identified last week using dental records, according to the FBI.
Steve Bertolino, the Laundries’ lawyer, said in text messages that he was told by police the autopsy by the Sarasota County medical examiner did not produce concrete results on Laundrie’s death.
“I was told the manner and cause of death were not determined and the remains were sent to an anthropologist (for) further evaluation,” he said.
The medical examiner’s office declined comment Monday, as did the FBI office in Denver that is leading the probe.
Eventually, Laundrie’s remains will be cremated and no funeral is planned by his family, Mr Bertolino said.
No information has yet been released on what investigators found in a backpack and notebook found with Laundrie’s remains.
Petito, 22, was discovered slain last month on the edge of Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, one of the places the young couple had visited on the trip they documented through social media videos.
An autopsy in Wyoming concluded Petito died by strangulation and that it was a homicide. Laundrie, 23, was listed as a “person of interest” in her killing but he was charged only with fraudulent use of a debit card that was not his.
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