SEATTLE — The man who became known as the “Barefoot Bandit” during a teenage crime spree in stolen cars, boats and planes has been transferred from prison to a work-release facility.
KOMO-TV reported that the Washington Department of Corrections confirmed Colton Harris-Moore’s transfer Sept. 27 from prison to Reynolds Work Release in Seattle.
He’s expected to work for his lawyer, John Henry Browne, and will be required to check in and out of the work-release facility.
Harris-Moore, 25, was sentenced in 2012 to seven years in prison in a deal that consolidated most of the charges against him. His spree began after he escaped from a Renton juvenile halfway house in 2008.
One of the charges, interstate transportation of a stolen vessel, involves an alleged crime in Ilwaco.
The notorious young thief made his mark in Pacific County in last days of May 2010. The 34-foot tuna-fishing boat Fat Cat was discovered missing the morning of June 1 after owner Larry Johnson of Tumwater used the online Ilwaco Port “Fish Cam” to check on his boat, as he did every morning.
“I thought maybe the port had moved it for some reason,” said Johnson after the fish cam showed an empty slip where he had tied up his boat the day before.
Johnson, back home in Tumwater, called the port office, where personnel checked the docks to no avail. Jim Neva, Ilwaco port manager at the time, then put out a call to surrounding ports to be on the lookout for the missing boat.
Within an hour of being reported missing, the Fat Cat, valued at $450,000, was discovered tied to the end of the dock at the Port of Warrenton.
Fingerprints on the boat matched those of Harris-Moore.
According to Johnson, Harris-Moore found a spare key that was stashed in the back of the boat and then drove it to Warrenton where he tied it back up, locked the door, and put the key back where he found it. None of the contents were stolen or damaged.
“It’s amazing for someone who’s not even from the area to go out in the middle of the night and navigate that channel,” said Neva.
Before making his way to Ilwaco, Harris-Moore stopped in Raymond and left $100 and a note at the Vetters Animal Hospital, according to Raymond Police Chief Ken Boyes.
“Animal causes are his thing,” said Boyes, who added that Harris-Moore was not associated with any crimes in north Pacific County.
He was ultimately captured after crash-landing a plane that he stole in Indiana and flew to the Bahamas.