Novelist and Oscar-nominee Jerry Hasford has pleaded innocent to felony charges of theft and possession of hundreds of stolen books from libraries in the United States and England.
Hasford, co-writer of the screenplay for the 1987 movie "Full Metal Jacket," was taken into custody after appearing before Municipal Court Judge James Ream, but defense attorney Orlan Donley indicated the $7,500 bail would be posted, said Deputy District Attorney Terry Estrada-Mullaney.
Hasford was charged with two counts of grand theft and 10 counts of possession of stolen property. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for Aug. 18.
The charges stemmed from the discovery of nearly 10,000 books in a storage locker rented to Hasford.
"There is evidence that among those 10,000 there are books from more than 70 libraries from all over the world, but we have filed charges only from the libraries we believe have the most books that were taken," Estrada-Mullaney said.
Police at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, found the books March 17 when they searched a locker rented by Hasford. Police were looking for 87 books that were overdue on Hasford's Cal Poly library card.
The charges involve approximately $20,000 worth of books from public libraries in Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Sacramento, St. Louis, Longview, Wash., London, and the city, county and university libraries in the central California community of San Luis Obispo, Estrada-Mullaney said.
Volumes allegedly taken from the London library at St. James's Square include "Catalogue of American Books in the Library of the British Museum," by Henry Stevens; "A Guide to English Literature," by F.W. Bateson, and "History of the Army of the Cumberland," by Thomas B. Van Horne.
After the books were found, it was revealed that a Sacramento County book-theft warrant for Hasford had been outstanding for three years.
Hasford earned an Oscar nomination this year as co-writer of "Full Metal Jacket," based on his Vietnam War novel, "The Short-Timers."