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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: Barefoot Bandit

Has the Barefoot Bandit hit the Bahamas?

NASSAU, Bahamas (AP) — Police were hunting across a tourist island Tuesday for signs of a pilot who vanished after wrecking a small plane in the Bahamas and investigators in the U.S. turned their suspicions toward an American teenager on the run dubbed “the Barefoot Bandit.”

The single-engine Cessna that crashed in shallow waters off Abaco island was apparently stolen from an airport in Bloomington, Indiana. By the time  rescuers arrived on Sunday, nobody was inside.

The 2009 Cessna 400 Corvalis was stolen over the weekend from the Monroe County Airport, the facility’s manager, Bruce Payton said. It was unclear how the thief got into the airport, which has a 10-foot security fence with barbed wire and coded access gates.

U.S. authorities said the heist has similarities to other thefts attributed to 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore, a Washington state teenager who has no formal flight training, including the theft of a Cessna from the airport in Bonners Ferry last fall.

The teen got his nickname for allegedly committing crimes while shoeless. He is suspected of stealing cars and small airplanes to evade authorities since escaping from a halfway house near Seattle in 2008.

Payton said a detective with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department told him authorities had recovered a stolen vehicle about a half-mile from the Indiana airport and the “the details of the stolen vehicle seemed to fit that of the pattern known as the Barefoot Bandit.”

FBI Special Agent Steven Dean said surveillance video taken from the Monroe County Airport also indicates that Harris-Moore is responsible for the theft, according to KOMO-TV in Seattle.

An FBI statement posted on the web site of the U.S. Embassy in Nassau said Harris-Moore may have recent injuries and urged anyone who sees him to contact the nearest Bahamas police station. It said the FBI is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.

A team of detectives in this island chain off the Florida coast traveled from Nassau, the capital, on Tuesday to join the investigation and aid the search for the pilot in Abaco, police Sgt. Chrislyn Skippings said. She said authorities had not confirmed the plane was the same aircraft stolen from Indiana.

The plane was reported missing Sunday after the owner received a call from the U.S. Coast Guard that the emergency locator transmitter on the plane was sending out a beacon signal off the coast of the Bahamas, Payton said.

Meanwhile, Bahamas police received a report of a wrecked plane and requested assistance from the U.S. Coast Guard, which dispatched a Falcon jet from Miami to fly over the area. The jet did not find any sign of bodies, said Petty officer Sabrina Elgammal, a Coast Guard spokeswoman in Miami.

Last week, police in Nebraska issued a warrant for his arrest, and police in South Dakota confirmed his fingerprints were found at a burglary scene.

Past coverage:

June 22: Has the Barefoot Bandit hit the Midwest?

June 3: $50,000 for Barefoot Bandit’s surrender

Feb. 11: Stolen plane, chalk drawn feet: Teen burglar back?

Oct. 7: Teen bandit becoming national sensation

Prints link Barefoot Bandit to South Dakota

YANKTON, S.D. (AP) — Fingerprints found at the scene of a Yankton burglary match those of the “Barefoot Bandit,” South Dakota authorities confirm. 

Yankton assistant police chief Jerry Hisek says he was notified today that state Division of Criminal Investigation found three of 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore’s fingerprints at the scene of a June 18 break-in.

The teen (pictured) had already been named a suspect. Harris-Moore, of Camano Island, Wash., has evaded authorities since April 2008, when he escaped from a halfway house south of Seattle.

He is accused of breaking into dozens of homes since and committing burglaries across the region and into the Midwest, including the theft of a small airplane from the Boundary County Airport.

Police in Nebraska issued a warrant for Harris-Moore’s arrest this week.

Past coverage

June 22: Has the Barefoot Bandit hit the Midwest?

June 3: $50,000 for Barefoot Bandit’s surrender

Feb. 11: Stolen plane, chalk drawn feet: Teen burglar back?

Oct. 7: Teen bandit becoming national sensation

Nebraska warrant issued for Barefoot Bandit

NORFOLK, Neb. (AP) — Police have issued an arrest warrant for a teen burglar known as “The Barefoot Bandit” after surveillance cameras apparently captured images of him at a northeast Nebraska airport the same day that an SUV was stolen from there.

Police have also collected fingerprints that could link 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore to the theft of the Cadillac Escalade from the municipal airport near Norfolk earlier this month, according to the arrest warrant affidavit.

The vehicle later turned up nearly 240 miles away in Pella, Iowa. The affidavit said police believe Harris-Moore was also involved in the theft of a car from Yankton, S.D. — which turned up in Norfolk — and another vehicle taken from a small airport near Pella.

Harris-Moore, a 6-foot-5 fugitive from Camano Island, Wash., escaped from a halfway house south of Seattle in April 2008.

Authorities believe he has since broken into dozens of homes and committed numerous burglaries across the Northwest, stealing boats, cars and even small airplanes, including a theft at the Boundary County Airport last year.

Norfolk detectives sent the surveillance video they believe shows Harris-Moore from the Norfolk airport to the Seattle office of the FBI and the Island County, Wash., Sheriff’s Department.

The Nebraska warrant charges Harris-Moore with burglary and theft. Harris-Moore, whose nickname arose from his penchant for committing crimes without shoes, has become notorious, with a Facebook fan page that boasts more than 42,000 followers.

Rolling Stone magazine also published a story on his exploits in May.

Past coverage:

June 22: Has the Barefoot Bandit hit the Midwest?

June 3: $50,000 for Barefoot Bandit’s surrender

Feb. 11: Stolen plane, chalk drawn feet: Teen burglar back?

Oct. 7: Teen bandit becoming national sensation

Oct. 2: Stolen plane may be the work of teen bandit

Has the Barefoot Bandit hit the Midwest?

SEATTLE (AP) — Police in the Midwest are investigating whether an infamous teen burglar from Washington state is behind a string of break-ins and car thefts, officials said Monday. Colton Harris-Moore, a 6-foot-5 19-year-old from Camano Island, Wash., escaped from a halfway house south of Seattle in April 2008.

Since then, authorities believe he’s been responsible for numerous burglaries at vacation homes and businesses around the Northwest, and that he’s stolen boats, cars and even a few small airplanes, including one from the Boundary County Airport in North Idaho.

A family in Yankton, S.D., found a tall man in their home last Friday, Assistant Police Chief Jerry Hisek said. They didn’t get a good look at him because the house was dark, and the family couldn’t identify Harris-Moore in photos. But the suspect did shave or cut his hair at the home, and investigators have sent that evidence to a state crime lab for DNA analysis, Hisek said.

A car stolen from Yankton turned up 60 miles south at Ta-Ha-Zouka Park in Norfolk, Neb., on Sunday, said Norfolk Police Capt. Steven Hecker. Another car — a Cadillac Escalade — was taken from Karl Stefan Memorial Airport nearby and turned up 240 miles east, in Pella, Iowa, on Monday.

Another car was taken from a small airport near Pella, Hecker said.

The Pella Police Department declined to comment on Monday, and Hecker said authorities don’t know whether the suspect is Harris-Moore.

“We weren’t familiar with this guy, but we certainly are now,” Hecker said.

The last trace of Harris-Moore in Washington state was over Memorial Day weekend, when he left $100 at a veterinary clinic in the southwestern town of Raymond along with a note that said: “Drove by, had some extra cash. Please use this money for the care of animals Colton Harris-Moore (AKA: ‘The Barefoot Bandit’) Camano Island, WA.”

Harris-Moore, who has more than 41,000 Facebook fans, earned the moniker by committing some of his crimes barefoot. Police confirmed his fingerprints were on the note.

Police in Oregon are investigating whether Harris-Moore is to blame for a series of crimes on June 1, when a stolen boat from southwestern Washington turned up in Warrenton, Ore.

A car was stolen from a nearby airport later that day.

“Seems like he’s always a day or two ahead of us,” Warrenton Police Chief Mathew Workman said Monday. “His luck’ll run out.”

Past coverage:

June 3: $50,000 for Barefoot Bandit’s surrender

Feb. 11: Stolen plane, chalk drawn feet: Teen burglar back?

Oct. 7: Teen bandit becoming national sensation

Barefoot Bandit donates to veterinary clinic

 RAYMOND, Wash. (AP) — Police have confirmed that a note left at a Raymond, Wash., veterinary clinic along with money totaling $100 was written by teen fugitive Colton Harris-Moore.

Raymond Police Chief Ken Boyes says the State Patrol crime lab confirmed Harris-Moore’s fingerprints were on the note.

The note asks the clinic to use the money to care for animals.

Boyes says it’s easy to be generous with other’s people’s money.

No recent crimes connected with Harris-Moore have been reported in Raymond. Recently, police in the northwest Oregon town of Warrenton are investigating a boat theft, an attempted plane theft and a car theft that happened within hours of each other on June 1.

Officials are analyzing fingerprints taken from a boat stolen from Ilwaco, Wash., and found tied up to a pier in Warrenton.

Harris-Moore has been on the run since April 2008, when he escaped from a group home south of Seattle. He has been suspected of breaking into homes and business in Washington, British Columbia, North Idaho and Oregon, including a plane theft in Boundary County.

Past coverage:

June 3: $50,000 for Barefoot Bandit’s surrender

Feb. 11: Stolen plane, chalk drawn feet: Teen burglar back?

Oct. 7: Teen bandit becoming national sensation

Oct. 2: Stolen plane may be the work of teen bandit

$50,000 for Barefoot Bandit’s surrender

SEATTLE (AP) — An anonymous donor is offering to pay a notorious Washington state teen burglar $50,000 if he turns himself in by next Tuesday.

Everett bounty hunter Mike Rocha announced the offer on Thursday. He says it’s genuine: The money’s been placed in the trust account of Edmonds criminal defense attorney James Johanson.

Nineteen-year-old Colton Harris-Moore has been on the run since April 2008, when he escaped from a group home south of Seattle. He has been suspected of breaking into homes and business in five Washington counties, British Columbia and North Idaho, where the teen is suspected of stealing an airplane from the Boundary County airport.

Police also believe he’s taken four planes, luxury cars and power boats.

Johanson says the offer isn’t a trick and ethical rules for lawyers would prevent him from engaging in such a ruse. He says he’ll represent Harris-Moore for free if the teen wants, and Harris-Moore can keep the $50,000.

Feb. 11: Stolen plane, chalk drawn feet: Teen burglar back?

Oct. 7: Teen bandit becoming national sensation

Oct. 2: Stolen plane may be the work of teen bandit

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