Police Decry "Folk Hero" Status of Teen Fugitive

The police of Washington State have a full manhunt underway for Colton Harris-Moore, a teen from Camano Island, who has used stolen airplanes to elude capture.  As if to jinx themselves, Island County Sheriff Mark Brown lost his temper with a “Today” show producer covering the story and said “I will not have him made into some kind of folk hero.”  Too late.  How do we know?  There is already a fansite for Colton Harris-Moore on Facebook.

A photograph Colton Harris-Moore took of himself with a stolen digital camera while hiding in the woods eluding police.

A photograph Colton Harris-Moore took of himself with a stolen digital camera while hiding in the woods eluding police.

While Police might decry his status as a “folk hero”, they surely contributed to the problem by their statements to the press that describe the teen as almost like a ninja.  Deputy Jeff Paterson explained that he had nearly caught Harris-Moore in the woods and saw him with his flashlight, but  “he virtually vaporized in front of me…”  The police allege that Harris-Moore laughed loudly from the woods when he realized he had eluded the officer.   Harris-Moore has hidden from police for 18 months and has lived off of stolen items.  He is believed to have trespassed into homes and quietly copied credit card information before leaving unnoticed.  He is suspected of then ordering camping and survival gear for himself with the credit cards.   Harris-Moore is alleged to have stolen a  Mercedes, but drove the vehicle off the road and fled when the police tried to stop him.  Harris-Moore’s latest incident involves flying off the island in a stolen plane and then over to Yakima.  His mother raised eyebrows recently when she told a reporter: “I hope to hell he stole those airplanes — I would be so proud,” she said. “But put in there that I want him to wear a parachute next time.”

The administrator of the Facebook Fan page writes: “Colt is the real life 21st century outlaw. The world is his playground. Should he turn himself in, or continue on? Post your feedback.”

If I were his criminal defense attorney, I would tell Colton Harris-Moore to turn himself in right away.  It sounds like he committed a bunch of crimes as a juvenile, but by not facing the charges, he has turned 18 and will face trial as an adult.

The police might decry his “folk hero” status but all this publicity works in their favor for two reasons: 1) It will be hard for Colton Harris-Moore to hide since everyone in the country has seen his face on TV, and 2) even his friends will turn him in if they see him so that they, in turn, can receive notoriety for playing a part in the case.

One Response to “Police Decry "Folk Hero" Status of Teen Fugitive”

  • Angry:

    Colton Harris-Moore is a selfish little shit who doesn’t care about anything other than his own entertainment. Look at the damage that he has done to those planes. Even to have the planes towed out of the woods would cost thousands. It is good that he will be tried as an adult and he should share a cell with Bubba until he learns his lesson.

Leave a Reply

Steve Graham is a criminal defense lawyer, and he splits his time between Spokane and Seattle, Washington. Visit his website by clicking: www.grahamdefense.com
Law Office of Steve Graham
1312 North Monroe Street, #140
Spokane, WA 99201
(509) 252-9167
Blogs I Read