DENVER (KDVR) — Authorities confirmed Sunday they found human remains near Grand Teton National Park believed to be missing woman Gabby Petito.
Petito, 22, was on a cross-country road trip with her boyfriend Brian Laundrie when she disappeared. The couple traveled by van and documented their journey on social media.
Laundrie returned home to Florida earlier this month without Petito. His whereabouts were unknown Sunday and he has not spoken to law enforcement about Petito’s disappearance.
Information led investigators to search in and around Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. The Denver FBI bureau assisted in the efforts that ultimately led to the discovery of human remains near Spread Creek dispersed campsite.
“As every parent can imagine, this is an incredibly difficult time for the family and friends, our thoughts and prayers are with them. We ask that you all respect their privacy as they mourn the loss of their daughter,” said Charles Jones, supervisory senior resident agent for FBI Denver in Wyoming.
Jones says they have not yet completed full forensic identification to confirm the remains found are Petito, but family has been notified of the discovery.
Bob Pence, retired special agent in charge for the FBI in Colorado and Wyoming, says investigators will have their hands full processing the area where Petito was found.
“A lot of evidence will be collected around the area where the human remains were found. Is there evidence there of a crime or does it look more like an accident or what?,” said Pence.
Pence says the Denver FBI bureau may have sent specialists from Colorado to Wyoming to assist.
“Typically, [with] a case like this, some specialists will be up there from headquarters in Denver, maybe evidence recovery people. There are a lot of specialties and most of those are based in Denver,” said Pence.
Officials did not release details on the condition of the remains found. Without that information, Pence says it’s not possible to estimate how long it could take to determine a cause of death.