Dog the Bounty Hunter says he’s on Brian Laundrie’s trail

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Dog the Bounty Hunter says he's on Brian Laundrie's trail

Dog the Bounty Hunter says he’s already closing in on Brian Laundrie as he officially launched his search for the 23-year-old fugitive who is sought for questioning in Gabby Petito’s disappearance and death.

“We’re here at the island,” the reality TV star, whose real name is Duane Chapman, said on Twitter Wednesday. “This would be and could be the perfect spot for him to hide. Not too many people out here but there’s a lot of environmental things that we’re going to fight.

“So here we go,” he said. “The search now is really on. The search has just begun.”

He wrote in the tweet that “boat crews and ground teams have been called in and we have search and rescue dogs deployed.”

Chapman, 68, was on Florida’s Marco Island Tuesday and was setting up a home base in the Sunshine State from which to launch his search for Laundrie, a source close to the celebrity manhunter told The Post this week.

On Wednesday, he was at Fort De Soto Park in Pinellas County — about 75 miles from Laundrie’s home — where Laundrie and his parents camped out earlier this month.

Citing another source, TMZ reported on Wednesday that Chapman believes Laundrie is not only alive but that “he’s close to capturing him.”

Duane "Dog the Bounty Hunter" Chapman reportedly believes he is close to capturing Brian Laundrie.
Duane “Dog the Bounty Hunter” Chapman reportedly believes he is close to capturing Brian Laundrie.
William Farrington

Chapman did not respond to requests for comment on Wednesday.

Laundrie was on a cross-country trip with Petito when she disappeared last month.

The body of the 22-year-old Long Island native was found at a remote Wyoming campground on Sept. 19, nearly three weeks after Laundrie returned home to the couple’s Florida without her.

Laundrie refused to cooperate with authorities and went missing on Sept. 14, according to his parents and has since been the subject of a massive manhunt.

Chapman announced Saturday he would join the search, even as an FBI-led manhunt continues at the 25,000-acre Carlton Reserve near the Laundrie home in North Port.

Laundrie is wanted as a person of interest in the disappearance and death of Gabby Petito.
Laundrie is wanted as a person of interest in the disappearance and death of Gabby Petito.
Instagram

A Wyoming coroner declared Petito’s death a homicide last month.

Laundrie has not been charged with her death but has been identified as the only person of interest in the case.

He is also named in an arrest warrant on federal fraud charges after prosecutors in Wyoming said he used someone else’s bank card on Aug. 30 and Sept. 1.

The FBI has not said if the card belonged to Petito.

Additional reporting by Jack Morphet

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