Teen fugitive’s partner in past crimes arrested for alleged theft of cheese

  • Mon Jun 28th, 2010 6:07pm
  • News

By Eric Stevick Herald Writer

STANWOOD — A former burglary buddy of fugitive Colton Harris-Moore has landed in jail again — this time for allegedly stealing cheese.

Harley Davidson Ironwing stands accused of first-degree robbery and second-degree assault for allegedly knocking down an 84-year-old man while fleeing a grocery store with five packages of string cheese hidden in his waistband.

Ironwing, 20, told police he took the cheese Friday night because he hadn’t eaten in three days and was hungry, according to court papers.

In earlier jailhouse interviews, Ironwing has bragged how he and Harris-Moore as boys would break into homes on Camano Island. He claimed he taught Harris-Moore, now 19, how to prowl and quickly find valuable jewelry and electronics, items that could be converted to cash.

Since then, Harris-Moore has sparked international headlines for crimes in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Canada. Police suspect he’s stolen planes, boats and luxury cars and broken into dozens of homes and businesses. He also could face federal charges for allegedly breaking into an automated teller machine and crossing international boundaries and state lines in stolen vehicles.

Law officers said Ironwing on Friday was being chased by a store employee and was sprinting out the front door of the grocery store when he spotted a sheriff’s deputy. He turned a different direction and ran toward an elderly couple, both 84, according to court papers.

The deputy tackled Ironwing and the pair fell into the elderly man, knocking him to the ground.

Deputies initially feared the man had a broken shoulder. The victim was taken to Skagit Valley Hospital in Mount Vernon where he was treated and released that night.

He had no broken bones, said Rebecca Hover, a sheriff’s office spokeswoman. The city of Stanwood contracts with the sheriff’s office for police services.

Ironwing has a history of felony convictions, mostly for property crimes He was released April 18 from Airway Heights Corrections Center near Spokane.

Ironwing’s sentence does not include community supervision, said Chad Lewis, a spokesman for the state Department of Corrections.

A bail hearing was scheduled today.

Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, stevick@heraldnet.com