Search For Brian Laundrie Will Be 'Scaled Back' As FBI Takes The Lead

Search Continues For Brian Laundrie, Wanted In Connection With Death Of Gabby Petito

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Authorities in Florida are continuing to search for Brian Laundrie but are scaling back their efforts as the FBI has taken the lead in the investigation.

"I don't think you're going to see those large-scale types of efforts this week," Josh Taylor, a spokesman for the North Port Police Department, told Fox News. "The FBI is now leading the search. I'm told it will be scaled back and targeted based on intelligence. Hopefully, water will lower in areas hard to currently access."

The search has focused mainly on the 24,000 Carlton Reserve, which is about 15 minutes from Laundries' home. The area is swampy and infested with alligators, which is why one local cattle rancher believes that if Laundrie has been there since he disappeared on September 17, he is likely dead.

"There's no surviving out here. I don't know how to say it,"Alan McEwen told Fox News Digital.

"I've been in the woods in and out all my life … I have learned a lot in my life, and one thing I know is no one is gonna survive out there for two weeks on foot," McEwen added.

He told the network he believes that Laundrie is hiding someplace else because there have been no signs of his body.

"No buzzards, no body," he said.

Laundrie has not been charged in the death of Gabby Petito but is considered a person of interest in the case. A federal arrest warrant was issued for him after he allegedly used a debit card without authorization.

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