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Brian Laundrie's Family Lawyer Reveals His Cause Of Death And Results Of Final Autopsy

Photo: Moab Police Department / Instagram
Brian Laundrie and Gabby Petito

Brian Laundrie's cause of death has finally been revealed a month after his remains were discovered.

Last month Laundrie’s parents, Chris and Roberta, discovered items that led the FBI to remains that matched the dental records of their son in the Carlton Reserve/Myakkahatchee Creek area — a discovery that may provide answers about his final movements, his time and cause of death and his alleged involvement in the death of his girlfriend. 

What was Brian Laundrie's cause of death?

The Laundrie family attorney, Steven Bertolino, released a statement revealing that Brian died by a self-inflicted gun shot wound to the head.

"Chris and Roberta Laundrie have been informed that the cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head and the manner of death was suicide," said attorney Bertolino.

RELATED: How Police Lost Track Of Brian Laundrie By Confusing Him For His Mother — Because She Was Wearing A Hat

Police had previously dispelled rumors about forensic investigations into Brian Laundrie's after reports suggested there had been no DNA match found on the remains. 

North Port Police clarified that there had not yet been a DNA analysis performed and the investigation is still ongoing.

It is unclear if the DNA match has been made since.

Internet sleuths who are obsessed with the Gabby Petito homicide case have continued theorize that the fugitive isn’t actually dead due to the confusion around the autopsy.

However, there’s plenty of logical reasoning behind why the autopsy results and forensic anthropologist's analysis took so long.

It was difficult to match Brian Laundrie's DNA to the remains.

As soon as they matched the dental records with the skull, people were curious as to why they couldn’t simply look at him and determine it was him by appearance — like they did with Petito.

Forensic studies professor at Florida Gulf Coast University, David Thomas Ph.D., explained why they needed to use dental records instead of their eyes.

“They are usually used in a place where DNA is probably not going to work,” he told WPBF. “The DNA is usually damaged. It’s pretty fragile outside the body. Especially because it was exposed to the elements. So, the elements destroy that."

RELATED: Tourist Finds Water Bottle Matching Gabby Petito’s Near Where Brian Laundrie’s Remains Were Discovered

At the point that he was found in October, Brian had been missing since September 13th when he told his parents he was headed to the reserve to go on a hike.

As Thomas explains, investigators likely had to find other ways to investigate his death.

Forsensic anthropologists were needed determine Brian Laundrie's cause of death. 

"Wherever there is bones, if there is a gunshot, that will be obvious,” Thomas said. “If he took a poison, they would literally have to go into the bones and figure out if that's what caused the death."

Poison, disease or an attack from a wild animal could also be determined by the forensic anthropologist. 

The recent information suggests that a gunshot wound was obvious from the remains that were found.

RELATED: Brian Laundrie’s Lawyer Says Parents Knew Their Son Was ‘Grieving’ A Week Before Gabby Petito Was Confirmed Dead

Forensic anthropologist Dr. Heather Walsh-Haney backed up the information given by Dr. Thomas in an interview with WPBF.

“Forensic anthropologists are called upon when the environment has ravaged or removed the soft tissue,” she said. “Soft tissue markers that the forensic pathologist would use."

Forensic anthropologists were also called to Petito’s body in determining her cause of death, claiming that knowledge of the skeletal anatomy is key for deaths caused by strangulation.

"It's through years of training that one understands the normal anatomy and can spot that type of fracture,” Walsh-Haney said. “We would be tasked with knowing what normal skeletal anatomy is in the neck and understanding when force is applied to it and it fractures, where the force would have come from, how much force was used, what instruments may have been used.”

Now that Brian's death seems to be solved, sleuths still want answers about what happened to Gabby.

Dr. Thomas thinks some information could be found in the notebooks that were also found with his body.

“What they did recover were notebooks, so you may have the story in those notebooks,” Thomas said. “You may have motive in those notebooks. He may have sat down and written out why he did what he did."

There’s still no public evidence that Laundrie was involved in the death of Petito but he remained the only person of interest in the case before his death.

RELATED: Weighted Down Gun Found In Florida Park Where Brian Laundrie's Family Went Camping After Gabby Petito’s Death

Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.