Man with striking similarities to subject of U.S. manhunt spotted in Toronto
The hunt for a man wanted in connection with the disappearance of his fiancé in Wyoming may have trickled north of the border, with an alleged sighting in Toronto setting the internet ablaze with amateur sleuths.
Police and the FBI are searching for Brian Laundrie following the discovery of the remains of Gabby Petito, his disappeared fiancé, on Sunday.
The two were on a road trip across the United States, though Laundrie returned from the cross-country trek alone, before disappearing himself as questions mounted.
A warrant for Laundrie's arrest was issued yesterday by the US District Court of Wyoming, though not directly tied to Petito's death. Instead, Laundrie is charged with the "use of unauthorized devices" after using Petito's debit card to withdraw over $1,000 USD in the days after she was allegedly killed.
The internet has been buzzing with tips and possible sightings of Laundrie on the run, including a recent unconfirmed sighting of someone with striking similarities right here in Toronto.
A TikTok poster from a now-deleted account shared her experience encountering a man she thought looked very similar to Laundrie.
In her post, which lives on through reposts, she explains, "I'm a flight attendant, and I'm overnighting in Toronto. I was picking up a DoorDash [delivery] outside and I noticed this guy was getting flustered walking out of the hotel."
"He got back into his car and drove off with another guy. I went downstairs to let the hotel know [that it might have been Laundrie], and they said he didn't know where he was going and he had the wrong hotel."
"I'm just trying to figure out if this looks like him or if I fell too far down the rabbit hole."
The lone sighting has sent amateur sleuths into overdrive, who seem to have fallen down the rabbit hole too.
Social media posts are emerging analyzing the unidentified man's facial features and raising questions about a camping trip Laundrie's parents took in the wake of events when few would contemplate a vacation.
Is Brian Laundrie in Toronto? Was his parents 3 day “camping trip” made to get him to the border so he could cross? Toronto photo (2nd) he is wearing a mask, however similar face mole, hairline. Thoughts? Video link: https://t.co/YK1oGTuP9b pic.twitter.com/aS2VY4fnLG— Kira Reisch (@KiraReisch) September 23, 2021
Though there's a clear resemblance, some aren't convinced.
I looked at both sides of Brian's head and the lumps and bumps don't match up. The ears don't match, and the Toronto guy has a pointy nose. Brian's nose is more bulbous. But, this has been the closest yet, much better than the Baker trail cam guy. pic.twitter.com/NPiSJvmpMX— dan crone (@cromagnondan) September 24, 2021
Besides some physical similarities and the report that the man looked agitated, there's really no reason for alarm bells.
Fleeing undetected across the border is no easy feat. If Laundrie were indeed going to such great lengths to evade capture in Canada, he likely wouldn't be wandering hotel lobbies laden with security cameras in the country's largest urban centre.
The reality here is more likely to be a case of us all having run out of decent true crime shows and podcasts through 19 months of isolation, and this was just some guy trying to check into the wrong hotel.
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