Several locals told media that the 25,000-acre Carlton Preserve is teeming with hungry wetland creatures that have allegedly eaten any flesh found there.
“I walk there all the time and there won’t be much leftovers,” said John Widmann, who lives about a mile from the reserve. New York Post.
“There are alligators, but the worst part are the wild pigs,” Widmann said. “They are evil animals and they eat anything. Any flesh in the open will not be wasted.
“The coroner will not have much to do,” he added. “Nature wastes nothing.
Another local also expressed concern over evidence disturbed by hikers frequenting the reserve when it reopens.
“There were dozens of local people here yesterday because it was the park’s first opening day since the first search,” Jayne Kornburger said. “What if these people had innocently disturbed evidence?” How did the police miss evidence during the first search? “
The police also called the conditions in the park “unfair”.
“Today when I got back there I saw firsthand the dangerous conditions they were working in,” Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marcelo said Thursday. “Rattlesnakes, moccasins, alligators,” he added.
Police had previously confirmed that the human remains found in the reserve were “skeletal”. Law enforcement said the remains and several other items found were submerged and were not discovered until after the waters receded.
The objects, including a backpack and a notebook, were discovered near a bridge connecting the Carlton Preserve to the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park.
Law enforcement, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), has been looking for Laundrie for more than a month because he was a person of interest in the death of video blogger Gabby Petito, his fiancee.
The FBI confirmed Thursday that the remains found were those of Laundrie. However, it is not clear if the evidence has revealed more information to assist investigators in Petito’s case.
Laundrie reportedly went hiking in the Florida Reserve a few days after returning from a trip without Petito. He then disappeared himself, which led law enforcement to launch a manhunt for him.
Laundrie was the only person interested in the matter. His parents’ lawyer said they asked authorities early on to search for him on the reserve.