I hadn’t until today, when news of his arrest in the Bahamas began to spread across the Internet.
Colton Harris-Moore is a 19-year-old Washington native who has been on the run from the police for over two years, evading capture by stealing cars, boats and even airplanes — despite an apparent lack of formal flight training.
Harris-Moore started his criminal career early, with his first conviction at the age of 12 for possession of stolen property. After fleeing a Washington halfway house in 2008, his run from the law took him across the country, including an alleged 1,000-mile flight from Indiana to Florida in a stolen airplane. According to the Associated Press, Harris-Moore’s story has captured the interest of tens of thousands on Facebook, where he has 58,000 fans, many of them now offering encouragement, praise and advice. He’s also got a fan page on the Internet, which sells T-shirts with his face on them and is taking donations for a Colton Harris-Moore defense fund.
With echoes of the blockbuster movie Catch Me If You Can, it’s easy to see why Harris-Moore, a tall, lanky, regular-looking kid, has garnered so much attention. While it’s yet to be seen how he will fare in court, there’s doubtless a book/movie deal in store somewhere down the line.