A man photographed by a wildlife camera in the Florida panhandle is not missing Brian Laundrie, police have confirmed.
Cops scrambled to investigate the potential sighting in Baker, Florida – 500 miles from the home of Laundrie, who is a ‘person of interest’ in the homicide of his van life girlfriend Gabby Petito.
The man in the photograph appears to have similar physical features as Laundrie, including a slim build and a bald head.
But the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office said the man was not Laundrie after tracking him down.
Deputies were able to identify the local from his neck tattoo, and contacted him to confirm he had been walking in the woods with a backpack.
Multiple sightings of Laundrie have been reported after he vanished from his parents’ Florida home just days before Petito’s body was found in Wyoming.
Police confirmed on Wednesday the man who resembled Brian Laundrie was a local
A man photographed by a wildlife camera in the Florida panhandle is not missing Brian Laundrie (right), police have confirmed. The man appeared to have the same physical features as Laundrie, including a slim build and a bald head
Sam Bass told police that he spotted a man (above) while he set up his deer camera in the wilderness in Baker, Florida early on Monday morning
The owner of the wildlife camera, Sam Bass, had noticed the man on September 20 and reported him to authorities after noticing the similar characteristics to Laundrie.
Bass told police that he spotted the man as he set up his deer camera in the wilderness early on Monday morning.
‘I’m not saying this is the guy but whoever was on my trail camera this morning in Baker, Fl strongly fits the description of Brian Laundrie, authorities have been contacted but people in the North West Florida area be on the look out,’ Bass wrote on his Facebook page on Tuesday.
But the local sheriff’s office said that it followed up on the report and ‘no one – and nothing – of note was located.’
‘The OCSO did its due diligence in response to this report and is wrapping up an extensive search that took place in this area to include nearby farmlands,’ the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post.
‘No one – and nothing – of note was located. The individual referenced in the post below has no known ties to our area.’
The photo image provided to police by Bass shows a man with a backpack as he is walking through the woods in the Florida Panhandle.
‘I’m not saying this is the guy but whoever was on my trail camera this morning in Baker, Fl strongly fits the description of Brian Laundrie, authorites have been contacted but people in the North West Florida area be on the look out,’ Bass wrote on his Facebook page on Tuesday
Although the man had a backpack (left), the color did not resemble the dark one Laundrie has been seen with on August 12 in Utah. The men also shared similar features including a bald head and a slim figure
Laundrie is being sought for questioning by federal and local authorities in the disappearance of Long Island van-lifer Gabby Petito (pictured)
The alleged sighting took place some 500 miles from Laundrie’s North Port, Florida home. North Port Police on Wednesday resumed a search for Laundrie at the Carlton Reserve, a swampy region where he is last believed to have visited before his disappearance last week
Authorities renewed their search on Wednesday of a swampy preserve area near Laundrie’s home.
Police in North Port, Florida, continue to search the Carlton Reserve to look for Laundrie, 23.
Investigators searched the 24,000-acre Florida nature preserve over the weekend without success.
They focused on the area after Laundrie’s parents told police he may have gone there.
Florida police deployed ATVs and drones to the snake and alligator-infested swampland.
Commander Joe Fussell said on the video: ‘The terrain is very difficult. Essentially 75 per cent of it is under water.
‘And other areas that are dry, we’re trying to clear. So we’re expecting to get wet by the end of the day and check the entire area for Brian Laundrie.’
He also revealed the searchers ‘have multiple drone operators that have been sent out in numerous teams.
‘We also have drones that operate as higher altitude that has more advanced technology to zoom in and to see areas that are difficult to access on foot or in wheeled vehicles as well.’
Gabby Petito, 22, is pictured with her boyfriend Brian Laundrie, 23, in a YouTube video made to document their ‘van life’ trip
Petito was last seen alive on August 24 leaving a hotel with Laundrie in Salt Lake City, Utah, during the couple’s cross-country campervan trip
The pair had been travelling on a cross-country trip together since July 2, when they left New York. Petito was reported missing on September 11
The Florida sighting was not the first reported to police and federal investigators.
Multiple people have reported sightings of a man fitting Laundrie’s description in the Mobile, Alabama area, with many posting about their suspicions online.
The city is more than 600 miles northwest of his home in North Port, Florida.
Mobile County Sheriff’s Office Captain Paul Burch told Fox 10 News he does not believe Laundrie had any connections to the area.
Rumors of Laundrie’s whereabouts have since flooded social media, with some speculating he may have been a body which was found in a dumpster outside of a Walmart in Mobile over the weekend.
But police on Monday said they have been investigating the reports, but none have turned up anything of substance.
The body in the dumpster, they said, belonged to an unidentified homeless man.
Florida police have deployed ATVs and drones to a snake and alligator-infested swampland as they resumed their search for van-life woman Gabby Petito’s boyfriend Brian Laundrie
Cops in ATVs were seen heading into the 25,000 acre Carlton Reserve in Florida to search for Laundrie on Tuesday
Four ATVs were seen heading to the swampy area in this photo, as part of the huge search operation to try and find Laundrie
North Port Police shared these images showing officers sending drones operated by remote controls up in the air
On Tuesday, a coroner in Wyoming confirmed that a body found on Sunday is that of Petito, and that her death was a homicide.
The 22-year-old from New York was last seen alive on August 24, checking out of a hotel in Utah during her road trip across the U.S. with boyfriend Brian Laundrie.
Laundrie returned to his family home in Florida without her on September 1, and on September 14 police were alerted to his disappearance. He has not been seen since, and remains a ‘person of interest’ in the case.
On Tuesday night, sources told TMZ that he is viewed by prosecutors as the prime suspect, but they are waiting to see if he is found alive, and if there is evidence that he killed her before charges are filed.
On Monday, the FBI went to Laundrie’s parents’ home in North Port and removed several boxes and towed away a car neighbors said Laundrie’s mother typically used.
Police announced Tuesday its officers had returned to the ‘vast and unforgiving’ Carlton Reserve to continue the search
More than 50 searchers from at least eight law enforcement agencies led by the FBI are using huge swamp-busting amphibious vehicles, ATVs, bloodhounds, other K9s and drones