DALY CITY, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on an Air Force deserter captured after 35 years in California (all times local):
Neighbors of a man accused of deserting the Air Force and assuming a fake identity for 35 years say he was quiet, pleasant and always wore a San Francisco Giants cap.
Residents of the quiet tree-lined street in Daly City, south of San Francisco, said Monday that they were stunned to see news reports identifying their neighbor as William Howard Hughes Jr.
The Air Force Office of Special Investigations says Hughes was an officer with top security clearance who disappeared in New Mexico in 1983 and was arrested in California last week.
The neighbors confirmed that photographs of Hughes were the man they knew as “Tim.”
Three neighbors interviewed by The Associated Press said they had not seen him in a few weeks. They say he lived with a woman named Anna and kept to himself aside from talking about the Giants, his favorite team.
Authorities say an Air Force officer with top security clearance who disappeared in New Mexico 35 years ago has been found in California after using a false name for decades.
The Air Force Office of Special Investigations says in a statement that William Howard Hughes Jr. has been apprehended at his home after a fraud investigation.
He told authorities after his capture Wednesday that he was depressed about being in the Air Force and decided to leave. He says he created a fake identity and lived in California since he vanished in 1983.
Hughes has been charged with desertion and is being held at Travis Air Force Base in California. He could face up to five years of confinement, forfeiture of all pay and dishonorable discharge from the Air Force.