Ex-homicide detective Pat Diaz slams handling of Gabby Petito case

Ex-homicide detective Pat Diaz slams handling of Gabby Petito case


A former Florida homicide detective has criticized police for not obtaining warrants to search Brian Laundrie’s home and electronic devices the day his girlfriend Gabby Petito was reported missing.

Pat Diaz, a former Miami-Dade homicide detective, told Fox News that investigators in North Port didn’t necessarily have to suspect a crime in order to obtain warrants in a missing-person case.

“Why would you [try to] get consent from the guy, and not get a search warrant?” Diaz told the news outlet Sunday. “You can get a search warrant for everything in that house, including his laptop.”

The former 35-year detective added that examining Laundrie’s electronics would have provided significant clues about Petito’s whereabouts before her disappearance – even if no crime was suspected and her boyfriend has kept mum.

But North Port police spokesman Josh Taylor told Fox News that his department “has no authority to execute a possible federal search warrant on our own.”

Police in Wyoming have found a body that the FBI has said is consistent with the description of Gabby Petito.
Richards / BACKGRID

He added: “I don’t see how anyone without all the facts in this case can come up with a reasonable conclusion and opinion on the matter.”

Taylor added that investigators have still not determined whether a crime even took place and that many details about the case have not been revealed to preserve the integrity of the probe.

“There is no information that a crime took place here in North Port. That is our jurisdiction,” he told the outlet.

Gabby Petito (right) and her boyfriend Brian Laundrie (left) were last seen together on a cross-country road trip. Laundrie returned to Florida alone.
Gabby Petito and her boyfriend Brian Laundrie were last seen together on a cross-country road trip. Laundrie returned to Florida alone.
Instagram

Police Chief Todd Garrison has said that Laundrie, who returned to his North Port home on Sept. 1 after going on the cross-country trip with Petito, had a constitutional right to refuse to speak with police about the case.

On Friday, the boyfriend’s parents told authorities that they had not seen him since Tuesday.

The FBI confirmed Sunday that the body found in a Wyoming national park is likely that of Petito.

Authorities are still looking for Laundrie (right) after he rebuffed talking to police and subsequently fled his parents house.
Authorities are still looking for Brian Laundrie after he rebuffed talking to police and subsequently fled his parents house.
Instagram

“Saddened and heartbroken to learn that Gabby has been found deceased,” North Port police said on Twitter. “Our focus from the start, along with the FBI, and national partners, has been to bring her home. We will continue to work with the FBI in the search for more answers.”

Meanwhile, a massive search was launched for Laundrie in the 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve near his parents’ home in North Port. The search continued Sunday until it was suspended for the day shortly before 6 p.m., with no sign of the missing 23-year-old.



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Rachel Meadows

Rachel Meadows

Trending topics news writer who enjoys cooking, walking her dog and travel.

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