MIAMI – Without saying a word, the teenager accused in a two-year string of sometimes shoeless burglaries and other crimes that helped him gain international notoriety as the “Barefoot Bandit” agreed Friday to return to Washington state to face federal charges.
Hector Dopico, an assistant federal public defender temporarily representing 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore, told a federal judge that Harris-Moore waived his right to a hearing on whether he should be transferred to Seattle. U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Dube said Harris-Moore would be handed over to the U.S. Marshals Service, which will handle his travel.
The U.S. marshals office in Seattle said the timing of Harris-Moore’s return would depend on how soon the marshals could line up a flight for him. It could be as soon as next week or three to four weeks from now, said spokesman David Miller.
Harris-Moore, clad in the typical tan jail jumpsuit, shackled at the wrists and ankles and wearing socks and sandals, said nothing during the brief hearing. Dopico said a bail hearing would likely be held in the coming weeks in federal court in Seattle.
The teen is suspected in about 70 crimes in nine states and British Columbia, some allegedly committed shoeless. He was first arrested at age 12 and had been on the lam since escaping in 2008 from a halfway house.
In addition to the worldwide media attention, Harris-Moore has become a folk hero to many, with his Facebook page listing more than 89,000 friends who frequently post messages of encouragement for his antics.