'Barefoot Bandit' to face trial in Bahamas

BahamasSocial IssuesJuvenile DelinquencyCrimeCrime, Law and JusticeBloomington (Monroe, Indiana)

UPDATE: The so-called "Barefoot Bandit" will face trial in the Bahamas for weapons possession and other charges, according to officials. The other charges include burglaries committed during his weeklong hideout in the island chain.

The police commissioner held a news conference Monday, where he described the suspect, Colton Harris-Moore, as "intelligent" and "mature." He also added Harris-Moore was taken into custody without incident.

The 19-year-old is expected in court Tuesday.

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Colton Harris-Moore, 19, was wanted for the theft of  a Cessna 400 Corvalis from the Monroe County Airport over the 4th of July weekend. The plane was later discovered wrecked in the waters off Grand Abaco in the Bahamas.

"I'm really glad that he didn't die in the crashing of the airplane," said owner John Miller, a beer distributor in Bloomington. "I'm glad that no one is hurt physically. I'm happy that he was arrested safely. At some point we'll figure out his motivations."

Bloomington was apparently the last stop on a stateside crime spree that authorities say began in the Pacific Northwest and stretched throughout the midwest to Indiana.

Harris-Moore is suspected of stealing cars and boats and airplanes in Washington and Idaho and committing burglaries in Nebraska on his way to Indiana. The teen received his nickname after reportedly leaving footprints at crime scenes.

"Initially I was hot and as I read more about his mother...you can understand that the kid may not have had the best upbringing and the best shot at turning out okay," said Miller, "but that's still no excuse for someone stealing property."

Pam Kohler has been quoted as cheering on her son's escapades, Miller, who said his $550,000 airplane is a total loss, has a disappointment that goes beyond the loss of his aircraft.

"The only disappointment I have is that I did not leave my golf clubs in the airplane and he could've stolen them and put a merciful end to my game right now."

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The AP reports police in the Bahamas say they have caught the teenage U.S. fugitive known as the "Barefoot Bandit."

A police official says 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore was arrested Sunday morning on the northern island of Eleuthera.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to speak publicly about the case.

The official said police expect to fly Harris-Moore within hours from Eleuthera to Nassau, the capital of the island chain off the Florida coast.

Island police have been searching for the wily fugitive since he allegedly crash-landed a stolen plane on nearby Great Abaco Island a week ago.

He has been on the run from American law enforcement since escaping from a Washington state halfway house in 2008.

He is also the suspect in the theft of a plane from the Monroe County airport last week.

The same plane was found crashed in shallow waters in the Bahamas a short time after it had been taken from the airport in Bloomington.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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BahamasSocial IssuesJuvenile DelinquencyCrimeCrime, Law and JusticeBloomington (Monroe, Indiana)
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