SEATTLE – The young Washington state man who gained international notoriety during a two-year run from the law in stolen boats, cars and planes has pleaded guilty to seven charges in the "Barefoot Bandit" case.
Colton Harris-Moore entered the plea in federal court Friday morning, reversing a not guilty plea made last week and ending the latest chapter in his fugitive saga. He could receive between 5 1/4 and 6 1/2 years in prison when he's sentenced in October, said Harris-Moore's attorney, John Henry Browne.
Federal prosecutors were to give details of the plea deal reached with the 20-year-old's lawyers after the Friday morning hearing.
The two sides had been negotiating whether Harris-Moore could participate in book or movie deals, with proceeds used to repay victims. His lawyers have said restitution could total about $1.3 million.
Prosecutors have said Harris-Moore hopscotched his way across the United States, frequently crash-landing planes in rural areas and stealing cars from parking lots at small airports. In Indiana, he stole another plane and made for the Bahamas, where he was captured last July.
Harris-Moore earned the "Barefoot Bandit" moniker by committing some of crimes without shoes. His escapades earned him cult status as an authority-mocking folk hero, and federal prosecutors have expressed reluctance to let him sell his story because it could compound the publicity he's received.
Harris-Moore is also expected to face state charges later on in the county where his crimes began.
The federal charges, though, stem from a spate of crimes in late 2009 and early 2010, when Harris-Moore is accused of flying a stolen plane from Anacortes, in northwestern Washington, to the San Juan Islands. Authorities say he then stole a pistol in eastern British Columbia and took a plane from a hangar in Idaho, where investigators found bare footprints on the floor and wall. That plane crashed near Granite Falls, Wash., after it ran out of fuel, prosecutors said.
He made his way to Oregon in a 32-foot boat stolen in southwestern Washington — stopping first to leave $100 at an animal shelter in Raymond, Wash. From Oregon, authorities said, Harris-Moore traveled across the United States until he made it to the Bahamas
In all, Harris-Moore is suspected of more than 70 crimes across nine states.