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Teen Fugitive Known as 'Barefoot Bandit' Caught in Bahamas
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Page 1 of 1Total of 8 messages
Posted by:Aug 12th 2010, 09:59:30 pm
Fig Tree News Team
Posted by:Aug 3rd 2010, 07:26:11 pm
Fig Tree News TeamMiami Man Selling Barefoot Bandit Boat on eBay:

$80,000 will buy you bullet-riddled boat from teen thief's last stand

..."A Miami man is offering fans of the "Barefoot Bandit" the chance to own a pricey piece of history from his last stand in the Bahamas.

William Sport, owner of the boat stolen by teen thief Colton Harris-Moore and used in his last-minute attempted getaway before he was captured by Bahamian authorities, is offering the boat up for sale on eBay.

The only problem with the 32-foot Intrepid powerboat: the engine is riddled with bullet holes.

Bidding for the boat is supposed to end shortly before midnight Wednesday, but with a starting price of $80,000, and a "Buy it Now" price of $110,000, there are still no bids as of late Wednesday morning.

This 32ft Intrepid seen on CNN, Fox News, Today Show, Dateline etc. was the last getaway boat for the infamous Barefoot Bandit," the auction reads. "This vessel is a collector's item and could be sold to or used in the movie that is surely coming.

Harris-Moore, 19, was captured in the boat around 2 a.m. on July 11, after leading authorities on a months-long, cross-country chase. The Washington state native reportedly stole cars, small planes and other sea vessels as he made his way through the states and Canada and then to the Bahamas.

Sport, who has been in the Bahamas on a month-long cruise, had left the keys in the Intrepid the night Harris-Moore found it.

After a brief chase, Bahamian authorities blasted the boat with a shotgun, causing damage to the engine, fiberglass structure and aluminum tower.

Sport, 65, who owns a Miami real-estate company, said he wants to get rid of the boat that he bought for $125,000 just a year ago and will now cost as much as $50,000 to repair.

"It's just something I don't want anymore," Sport told the Seattle Times. "It's my fault, I didn't think it'd be stolen. I kept a pretty close eye on it. I didn't think the police would shoot out the engines in it."

Although Harris-Moore had a gun at the time of his capture, Sport wishes the cops wouldn't have fired on his boat.

"The police could have taken a warning shot. He's a little punk," Sport told the Times. "I have no sympathy for him. He's a thief."

Sport plans to file a lawsuit against Harris-Moore, who is being held at a Federal detention center in Miami as he awaits his extradition back to Washington."
Posted by:Aug 3rd 2010, 05:10:42 pm
Fig Tree News Team

'Barefoot Bandit' was scavenger, opportunist

By Erik Lacitis Seattle Times | Posted: Sunday, August 1, 2010 12:00 am

ELEUTHERA, Bahamas "Hey," the young local guys on shore yelled at the skinny youth on the Boston Whaler drifting about 30 feet away. "You're the Barefoot Bandit!"

Colton Harris-Moore replied, "That's me."

He was wearing shorts with a camouflage print, a light-colored T-shirt. He didn't appear scared or nervous. It was about 11 p.m. on Saturday, July 10.

One of the guys, Morris Jonassaint, 19, was struck by something that Harris-Moore said at one point.

"He says, 'Call the cops! Call the cops! I want to get chased! I'm bored!'" Jonassaint recalled.

Harris-Moore was hours away from the end of his last week of freedom. His two-year run that had taken him from Camano Island, Wash., across the country, and to here, was over.

During his days on the lam, Harris-Moore had turned into an outlaw cult hero to some, garnering worldwide media attention and nearly 93,000 friends on Facebook. He is believed to have landed in the resort islands of the Caribbean in a stolen plane. But instead of cocktails and sunning on sandy beaches, the "Barefoot Bandit" spent his days hiding in hot, humid tropical scrubland, surviving on stolen Gatorade and candy bars.

Although brazen to the end, Harris-Moore's freedom ended when his getaway boat wound up stuck on a sandbar, with the 6-foot-5 19-year-old ducking a hail of gunfire from local police before surrendering.

Harris-Moore now is being held at the Federal Detention Center in SeaTac, Wash. He is charged with interstate transportation of stolen goods in connection with the theft of an airplane in Idaho and is under investigation for alleged involvement in dozens of burglaries and other crimes in Washington and eight other states.

Crash landing

On July 4, about 1:30 p.m., residents in the 800-person settlement of Sandy Point on Abaco Island in the Bahamas saw a small plane circling overhead for about half an hour.

"We just thought it was some tourist taking pictures," said Dwight Pinder, who owns a two-pump gas station and small convenience store. Hours later, his store was burglarized for chips, candy and Gatorade.

The $620,000 single-engine Cessna Corvalis 400, taken from the small Monroe County Airport in Bloomington, Ind., was crash-landed in nearby marshes. It had been flown 1,100 miles to this spot, a trip that had taken more than six hours.

(In a Bahamas court, Harris-Moore never acknowledged flying a plane there. Instead, he said he swam to the islands, at least 160 miles from the United States.)

According to Patrick Smith, a commercial pilot who writes "Ask the Pilot" for Salon magazine and has a website by that name, a pilot would not have set off alarms for FAA radar by turning off the transponder and flying at low altitudes.

In a story citing unnamed police sources, The Nassau Guardian said Harris-Moore told police he had come to the Bahamas because he had learned from the Internet that it had many islands, airports and docks.

He had a belief that fate was guiding him, said John Henry Browne, attorney for Harris-Moore.

"He thought, if that's where he was supposed to land, that's where he'd land. And he figured that if he got caught, he was supposed to get caught," Browne said.

The plane was crash-landed quite well in a swampy stand of mangroves trees and shrubs that can grow in saltwater.

It was a four-hour trek in tropical heat and humidity from Sandy Point to the plane. Officers who walked it came back with clothes and boots caked in mud.

As in past alleged crimes, Harris-Moore appeared to have the smarts to think fast.

"He took cushions out of the plane and laid them underneath the plane, where it had landed. I think he rested there until dark," said Michelle Engelbrecht, a partner in an eight-room resort in Sandy Point. She and two friends walked to the plane.

They found a plastic bucket outside the plane, apparently used to collect rainwater.

Inside were Handi Wipes-type cleaning cloths. They figured they had been used to wipe off fingerprints.

Later, a Chevy Tahoe was stolen from Sandy Point and found abandoned some 50 miles away in the main town of the island, Marsh Harbour.

Harris-Moore was believed to have stolen a 44-foot powerboat at a Marsh Harbour marina Tuesday, then taken it 40 miles south to the island of Eleuthera, which means "freedom" in Greek.

The boat was found beached in the treacherous reef off northern Eleuthera known as the Devil's Backbone, so named because it has been the site of shipwrecks.

To reach shore, Harris-Moore probably would have had to make his way through tropical brush and trees.

During the next three days, Harris-Moore was spotted at a water-taxi dock on the eastern side of the island.

People at the dock would sporadically see the gangly youth standing on the shore on the other side of the cove, sometimes going into the water. Nobody paid much attention.

"Just a white boy, just a tourist, hanging out, whatever, doing the tourist thing," said Denaldo Bain, manager of Coakley's International Sports Bar, a modest local tavern.

Locals believe he probably was hiding out in a nearby small cove of bushes, mango plants and grasses.

"He was not living in fine hotels," said his attorney, Browne, who noted that the federal pretrial report on Harris-Moore said the youth was "vacationing" in the Bahamas.

On Wednesday night, someone broke through a screen into Coakley's bar, again taking snacks such as Snickers and chips, water, Gatorade and a couple of beers.

The next morning, Bain noticed that not only had a security light been taken apart, but someone had moved the TV's remote control.

On Saturday night, Harris-Moore is believed to have walked along the beach to Whale Point, a place with expensive homes. One of the homeowners says his 15-foot skiff was stolen that night.

Harris-Moore was spotted at the water-taxi stand in a similar skiff, casually talking with the young men there.

Every time Harris-Moore would get within 15 to 20 feet of the dock, he'd turn on the motor and go back 40 feet or so, Jonassaint said.

"He'd do that, back and forth, going on for like an hour," he said.

"We were all just sitting there, laughing, talking. I asked if he need anything. A drink? He said, 'I don't drink and drive.' I asked if he wanted some food. He said, 'I'm good.' I asked if he wanted something to smoke. He said, 'No.'"

Eventually, a couple of Jonassaint's buddies got into a boat to chase Harris-Moore. He eluded them and headed to Harbour Island.

Caught on camera

About midnight, a security guard spotted Harris-Moore at the Romora Bay Resort and Marina in Harbour Island, where he docked the skiff. Twice, security cameras on a 92-foot yacht at the dock caught Harris-Moore on the run, wearing a knapsack and carrying in his right hand what appears to be a gun. He was barefoot.

Kenny Strachan, security director at the resort, saw Harris-Moore running toward him. "He kept repeating, 'They're trying to kill me!'" Strachan said.

At that point, no police were following Harris-Moore, and the two men in the boat had given up their chase.

Strachan then saw Harris-Moore holding a silver 9-mm handgun with a black handgrip. The security director ran alongside Harris-Moore, telling the youth he would help him.

Strachan said he saw that the youth's index finger had moved inside the trigger chamber.

"I wasn't scared at no time. I saw him look hungry and frail, with bruises and scratches on his legs," Strachan recalled.

"I was glad to meet this man they were looking for all these years. I could see the kid was not an evil person."

Still, Strachan opted for caution.

He stopped chasing Harris-Moore and used his cell phone to call police.

Fifteen officers combed the property and the small island for two hours, Strachan said.

They had no success.

Then, at 2:45 a.m., Strachan heard a boat motor start.

"The 'Barefoot Bandit' took off with a lot of speed, full throttle," he said.

This time, it was in a 32-foot Intrepid powerboat.

Officers borrowed a 27-foot Boston Whaler with security cameras from the owner of the yacht. The owner also agreed to let his captain, Ronald Billiot, skipper the Whaler.

On the chase boat, there were nine men Billiot; another yacht captain; Jordan Sackett, the son of the yacht owner; and six police officers with shotguns and Uzis.

In the dark, Billiot spotted Harris-Moore in the Intrepid. Harris-Moore had become stuck on a sandbar.

"The officers were yelling, 'Stop, stop! Put your hands up!'" Billiot said.

"Then we seen a flash in the air, a muzzle flash. I don't know which way it went, it was dark."

Harris-Moore appeared to be in a panicked state, Billiot said, even pointing the 9-mm gun to his head.

"He kept repeating, 'Don't come any closer! I'm going to kill myself! I'm not going back to jail!'"

At the same time, Billiot said, he could see that Harris-Moore was managing to bump the stolen boat along the sand and soon would be off the sandbar.

"I told the police officers, once he gets off the sandbar; there is no way we can keep up with him. We've got too much weight and he's one single guy on a faster boat," Billiot said. "After that, the consensus was to shoot the engines."

Police fired 25 to 30 shots, the spray hitting other parts of the boat. Harris-Moore went for cover.

"The he comes up and says, 'Stop shooting!' He's waving his arms, but he still has the gun in his hand."

Sackett said Harris-Moore began throwing articles in the water an Apple laptop with a black cover case, what appeared to be an iPhone and the handgun.

About five hours later, at daylight, Sackett was among those returning to retrieve the articles from the shallow water.

He said they found a spent shell in the gun's chamber and two hollow-point bullets in the magazine.

Billiot remembered clearly what Harris-Moore said as he was taken to the dock, facing jail.

"He said, 'You guys should have killed me.'"
Posted by:Jul 16th 2010, 10:28:43 am
GrouperGood job to all involved!
Check out;
Posted by:Jul 13th 2010, 10:25:45 am
ColinI bet there are some great stories like this from Briland and Spanish Wells from the Prohibition days. Please post if you know some!
Posted by:Jul 11th 2010, 11:41:26 pm
MaddieThanks for the update!
Posted by:Jul 11th 2010, 03:38:08 pm
Tuck ShopHere's a bit more on the take down. Nicely done Ramora Bay!

Police said 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore was taken into custody without incident following the chase in the waters off Harbour Island. Authorities responded to a reported sighting of Harris-Moore just after 2 a.m ET Sunday, said police commissioner Ellison Greenslade.

However, an account of the arrest offered by a spokeswoman for Romora Bay Resort and Marina described a dramatic capture befitting a James Bond film.

The marina's security director, Kenneth Strachan, saw a barefoot young man about 2 a.m. Sunday carrying a gun with a knapsack over his shoulder running up the dock. "They're going to kill me," the man told Strachan, according to a statement issued by the resort.

The man had arrived on Harbour Island from the nearby island of Eleuthera in a 15-foot skiff, said resort manager Anne Ward in the statement. Strachan put out a call for help, telling Ward to come as soon as possible.

* Colton Harris-Moore
* Bahamas

Upon her arrival, Ward told guards to disable the skiff's engine as the man ran through the resort property, attempting to steal a boat from a nearby house as a crowd gathered at the marina, the statement said.

However, Ward said he ran aground in the second boat, as he didn't realize how shallow the water was. Police and marina authorities surrounded his boat, and police shot out its engines, she said in the statement.

"At one point, the boy threw his computer in the water and put a gun to his head. He was going to kill himself. Police talked him out of it." Authorities loaded the suspect into the resort's work truck and took him to the Harbour Island police station, she said.

Harris-Moore was being transported to Nassau, Bahamas, on Sunday, authorities said. Greenslade said police seized a gun and other items from him.

The fact that Strachan could call for help was significant, the resort said, noting phone service on Harbour Island has been erratic since an underwater cable was cut recently.

The FBI did not immediately confirm Harris-Moore was in custody, saying it wanted to positively identify him through fingerprints first.

Royal Bahamian police are "absolutely confident they have him," said Steve Dean, assistant special agent in charge for the FBI's Seattle, Washington, office. The FBI will compare fingerprints to determine whether the suspect is Harris-Moore upon his arrival in Nassau, Dean said. "We're just being a little cautious."

Greenslade said the suspect was positively identified as Harris-Moore, and that he was seen by a doctor following his arrest and "appeared to be in very good health."

Harris-Moore is suspected of flying a stolen plane to the Bahamas.

Posted by:Jul 11th 2010, 11:02:34 am
MaddieNASSAU, Bahamas (July 11) -- A U.S. teenager who allegedly stole cars, boats and airplanes to dodge U.S. law enforcement for two years was finally captured today in the Bahamas, bringing an end to exploits that made the "Barefoot Bandit" a folk hero.

Colton Harris-Moore was arrested before dawn in northern Eleuthera, said Sgt. Chrislyn Skippings, a spokeswoman for the Royal Bahamas Police Force. A contingent of high-ranking officers traveled to the island to take the suspect to Nassau, the country's capital, where he faces possible extradition to the United States.

Island police had been searching for the wily 19-year-old thief since he allegedly crash-landed a stolen plane a week ago on nearby Great Abaco Island, where he was blamed for a string of at least seven break-ins.
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Authorities caught Harris-Moore as he attempted to dock a boat at Harbour Island, a small tourist destination just off mainland Eleuthera, said a senior police official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the case. He said authorities had been watching the coastlines overnight.

Harris-Moore, who has been running from American law enforcement since escaping from a Washington state halfway house in 2008, gained fame and thousands of fans who admired his ability to evade arrest. He is suspected of stealing cars, boats and at least five planes - including the aircraft he allegedly lifted in Indiana and flew more than 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) to the islands off Florida's coast, despite a lack of formal flight training.

The teen is a skilled outdoorsman who honed his abilities growing up in the woods of Camano Island in Puget Sound about 30 miles north of Seattle.

Island police picked up his trail in Eleuthera after recovering a 44-foot (13-meter) power boat stolen from a marina on Abaco, 40 miles (65 kilometers) to the north.

Burglary victims in Eleuthera told The Associated Press on Saturday they had little doubt the lanky, 6-foot, 5-inch fugitive was on the island.

Ferry boat captain Freddie Grant said he was returning from Harbour Island on Wednesday evening when he saw a tall, white teenager bathing or swimming in an inlet near the ferry landing. Ferry service employee Stan Pennerman also said he saw Harris-Moore lurking in the woods the same day.

Neither man thought much of it until they noticed the next morning that somebody had damaged the ignition system on three of their boats.

A bar at the ferry landing was also burglarized Wednesday night by a thief who cut a screen to break in, dismantled a security light, and moved the television's remote controls, said Denaldo Bain, the 30-year-old manager of Coakley's International Sporting Lounge.

"He was watching television. He was just chilling," said Bain, who also said he saw the teenager in the inlet.

Sightings were later reported elsewhere in Eleuthera, including at a bar in Governor's Harbour, 50 miles (80 kilometers) to the south, where one witness said Harris-Moore bought drinks for a girl. Others claimed to see him driving a rental car around the island Saturday.

Harris-Moore's mother, Pam Kohler, has said that he had a troubled childhood. His first conviction, for possession of stolen property, came at age 12. Within a few months of turning 13, he had three more.

But Kohler also has publicly defended her son, saying the allegations against him are exaggerated. She has told the AP that she hoped he would flee to a country that doesn't have an extradition treaty with the United States.

Reached early Sunday at her home on Camano Island in Washington state, she said she'd heard the news about the arrest but had no comment.

Harris-Moore was sentenced to nearly four years in juvenile detention after being caught in an unoccupied home in 2007, but he did well enough there that he was transferred to a group home, where he sneaked out of a window more than two years ago.

He was dubbed the "Barefoot Bandit" for allegedly going shoeless during some crimes and once allegedly leaving behind chalk footprints as a calling card.

His legend has grown as supporters have bought "Run, Colton, Run" T-shirts and written songs about his exploits. He has tens of thousands of followers on Facebook.

Associated Press Writers Mike Melia in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Gene Johnson in Seattle contributed to this report.

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