Mother Of ‘Barefoot Bandit’ Angry About $1.3 Million Movie Deal

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I read this headline on the Huffington Post today, and I got excited about the thought of another parent refusing to reward their children for dishonest or unfair behavior. I thought about the determined mother who turned in her daughter after the London riots. I imagined a parent like the father who made his twin boys fess up about switching places for a charity hockey shot, which might lose the family $50,000. I thought the mother of the “Barefoot Bandit” might be disgusted that a young man would receive so much money after committing so many crimes. Really, how does that teach this young adult responsibility for his actions, if theft ends up making you a million bucks for a movie deal?

I was all set to have one more responsible role model. Except that Colton Harris-Moore‘s mother isn’t upset because her son might earn money simply for becoming a famous criminal. She’s angry because she isn’t going to get a cut. Apparently, Pam Kohler, the “Barefoot Bandit’s” mother, had already negotiated the sale of her son’s life story to another company that would give her $300,000 as well. Now, with her son signing a deal arranged by his lawyer with 20th Century Fox, Kohler looks to earn nothing from her infamous little boy.

To be fair, no one will actually receive the $1.3 million being offered by Fox. The money will have to go to help pay restitution to the young man’s victims. But this bizarre case of a family fighting over money that was earned from a crime spree is pretty repulsive. I hate to be sanctimonious, but if your teenage son was arrested after a two-year manhunt and a multitude of criminal acts, maybe you shouldn’t be receiving a payout. I don’t believe that a parent is responsible for every action their children take. I promise, my parents were not to blame when I made idiotic decisions as a teenager. They raised me better than that and I knew it.

However, if you’re trying to profit off of your son’s crime-spree, I think its safe to say that you might have been part of the problem here. If you think that you deserve to be awarded money simply because your son stole it in an interesting way (barefoot…), I can see where lapse in judgement began.

Colton Harris-Moore reminded us all of Catch Me If You Can. He was a young kid stealing boats and planes in an outrageous fashion. I can see the Hollywood appeal for this story. I can even appreciate that the rights to this story cost money and that the money will go to pay back the victims of these thefts. But I cannot understand how a parent who’s son is in jail believes that she deserves a kickback for her contributions in making her son a criminal.

(Photo: Huffington Post)