The feds supposedly caught a big break, and Brian Laundrie in the Gabby Petito case. An alert hotel employee along the Appalachian Trail reported that Laundrie had checked in.
Feds immediately responded, broke down the guy’s door, rushed in with drawn guns and riot shields, and handcuffed him.
Only it wasn’t Laundrie. Seemingly, no one did any investigative work before making demonstrating that they are complete fuckups.
It’s pretty standard these days to show some kind of ID when checking into hotels; it’s required by law some places.* If that employee thought the guest looked like Laundrie (looking at the photos, I don’t see much resemblance beyond the scruffy beard), he could call the cops and give them the guest’s ID info (and note that the victim here had booked that room in advance). The police could run it through their systems, and determine that the persona appears to be legit and not Laundrie. They could then go to the hotel and politely knock on the guy’s door, and tell him that there’s a little confusion that they’d like to sort out. ID confirmed, the cops thank him and leave.
Oh, that’s not nearly as fun and exciting as letting the feds make a dynamic entry to arrest a…
…well, unless there’s a secret warrant out there, the only thing Laundrie is officially wanted for is unauthorized use of a bank card.
The hotel generously offered the traumatized couple a free night’s stay and a complimentary breakfast. One hopes in a new room with a functional door.
I’d sue the shit out of them.
* I think about the only time I’ve checked into a hotel/motel in the past 25 years when I did not have to show some kind of ID was that one time… Special circumstances: I ended up overnighting in a dump that normally charges by the hour; maybe half hour. I barricaded the door, slept on my own bedding, and with my gun. That kind of place.
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