Former FBI agent Terry Turchie says refugees like Brian Laundrie “tend to try to figure out” how to reach their “comfort zone” while on the run and are often located in those places.
Laundrie, 23, is wanted on charge of debit card fraud and is a person of interest in the murder of his 22-year-old fiancé, Gabby Petito, who was reported missing on September 11th. Laundrie’s family last saw him on September 13th.
“People do not change because they become a refugee,” Turchie, who spent a year in the North Carolina mountains between 1998 and 1999 and led the hunt for Olympic bomber Eric Robert Rudolph, told Fox News Digital. “They tend to try to figure out how to land in the comfort zone.”
Laundrie enjoyed hiking and traveling, so some experts have suggested he may be in the desert or on the road, and several potential observations have added some credibility to these theories. Others have suggested that the refugee may be closer to home and possibly get help from another person.
Laundrie’s sister Cassandra described her brother in an interview as a “mediocre” survivor.
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“Obviously he’s not out in some camp or in a cave somewhere on the hard, cold ground or … snake, gator-infected water. He’s somewhere he’s probably being taken hand about, “Turchie said. “When you see how he came running home after something obviously happened, that kind of tells you what he’s probably doing now.
Laundrie and Petito were traveling across country roads in a van when Petito disappeared. Laundrie returned to their North Port, Florida home, without Petito on September 1st. Ten days later, Petito’s parents reported her missing. Laundrie’s parents reported him missing on September 17, but recently said the last time they saw him was on September 13.
The FBI found Petito’s remains in Moose, Wyoming, where the couple visited Grand Teton National Park on September 19.
Turchie explained how a key player in the FBI’s search for Rudolph in the 1990s was a man who shared some of Rudolph’s interests. Rudolph had spent time talking to the man at his health food store in North Carolina, and the man eventually provided the FBI with useful information about Rudolph after initially refusing to talk to the agency because he was strongly anti-government.
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Laundrie can similarly be around people he knows or trusts. Driving to distant places is “exactly the kind that it may very well be what he does,” but he should have the finances to do so, Turchie said. A minor traffic error can also cause “his refugee to drive rather short.”
Although all refugees are different, “they all get tired eventually, and many of them end up being on the run for …. well over a decade,” Turchie said, adding that he does not think Laundrie will be on the run for so long.
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“But the formula is essentially the same,” the former FBI agent said of the search process. “You interview as many people who need this person as you can, you keep following it. You talk to neighbors, friends, and you look for anything. [the fugitive] could have said over a period of time that he did not have this guard up where he had done nothing. “
These clues, Turchie believes, will ultimately lead officials to discover Laundrie in the same way it has helped them discover other refugees.