As authorities continue their search for Brian Laundrie, who went missing shortly before his girlfriend Gabby Petito was found dead, reality TV star Dog the Bounty hunter has embarked on his own crusade to locate the 23 year old man in Florida. Now, a viral social media post allegedly shows a plane in the air with a banner reading “Aloha Brian Laundrie – Dog”. Many wonder if this was a publicity stunt orchestrated by Dog himself.
The TV star, real name Duane Lee Chapman, joined the national manhunt for Laundrie earlier this week. He claimed that an informant had informed him that the fugitive was probably inside the park of Fort De Soto. Laundrie and her parents Chris and Roberta stayed at a campsite in the park on September 6, shortly after returning alone from his trip in Petito’s Ford Transit van. His murdered remains were later found in Wyoming.
Dog the Bounty Hunter finds a new bivouac where Brian Laundrie camped with his parents
Are Brian Laundrie’s parents going to disappear? Internet says “model” indicates that they will
“This junction of the investigation into the murder of Gabby Petito sounds like an absolute feverish dream,” the message read. “You have Dog the Bounty Hunter who has stalked Brian Laundrie to a tropical island and is now taunting him by waving a banner around the island in the hopes of flushing him out.” The tweet had garnered more than 28,000 likes and nearly 5,000 retweets at the time of writing..
This junction of the investigation into the murder of Gabby Petito sounds like an absolute feverish dream. You have Dog the Bounty Hunter who has stalked Brian Laundrie to a tropical island and is now taunting him by waving a banner around the island in the hopes of flushing him out. pic.twitter.com/RGCpMc3cBE
– J e double F (@boutAWeekAhgo) September 29, 2021
According to Newsweek, there were multiple versions of the image, some replacing Dog with MTG, referring to the initials of Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA). The Dog the Bounty Hunter team, however, claimed that neither they nor Chapman had waved a banner over Florida in their search for Laundrie. “Frankly, I would have liked to think about it, but it wasn’t our team,” Chapman told Newsweek via email. “I would love to shake hands with whoever is behind the banner, I’ll tell you,” he added.
Additionally, it is not clear if the “Aloha Brian Laundrie” banner was deployed or if the image was created using a photo editor. Chapman himself said he had not seen any such banner while investigating the area of Fort De Soto Park. “We are here on the island,” he said in a video post. “It would and could be a perfect place to hide. Not too many people here, but there is a lot of environmental stuff that we are going to fight. So here we go. The research is now really underway. just started.”
UPDATE: The video is from this morning – earlier today we launched an active and specific research in a key area based on the intelligence we receive and seek. Boat crews and ground crews were called in and we deployed search and rescue dogs. More soon… pic.twitter.com/g2tq85JTZX
– Duane Dog Chapman (@DogBountyHunter) September 29, 2021
MEAWW also reported how the bounty hunter search operation was joined by former Navy SEALs, Marines and a K9 unit. The TV personality said Thursday, September 30, that he was pleased with the progress of his efforts and believes his team will soon find the missing fugitive. Chapman and his team hiked an island called Egmont Key off the coast of St. Petersburg, Florida. “We have a group of volunteers,” he said. “Most of them are former law enforcement, former Navy SEALs and Marines. So we’re on the hunt, I feel really good with that.
The day before, Chapman revealed he had found a makeshift campsite and a new Monster Energy Ultra Gold can that was not rusted or faded, suggesting that it had recently been discarded. However, authorities have yet to determine whether the can is linked to Laundrie and her family.