Billionaire Trout Bum?

Billionaire Trout Bum?

Usually the person found dozing underneath the table at a fly shop is a young trout bum who stayed up too late drinking beer and tying flies and never

Usually the person found dozing underneath the table at a fly shop is a young trout bum who stayed up too late drinking beer and tying flies and never made it home. It's really not too big of a deal. On the other hand, finding the 52-year-old son of a Texas billionaire curled up asleep on the floor--and in possession of a cooler full of allegedly stolen fishing gear--is entirely out of the ordinary. However, that's exactly what happened in June at a fly shop in Cornwall Bridge, Connecticut.

According to Housatonic Meadows Fly Shop manager Moe Booth, Michael Pickens, son of billionaire T. Boone Pickens, was in town for a couple of days to fish the Housatonic River. Booth says Pickens seemed "pretty cool" when he visited the shop the first time, and the two talked about fishing, football and Texas.

Although he is personally rumored to be worth millions of dollars, Booth says Pickens didn't spend more than $8.

Things got weird a couple of nights later when Booth stopped by the shop after closing up and noticed that it had been broken into. Booth entered the shop and found Pickens sleeping on the floor beneath a small computer desk. When he was awoken, Booth says Pickens acted as if he had done nothing wrong.

Authorities recovered all the items Pickens allegedly had attempted to steal, but Booth still hasn't gotten them back--about half of his supply of rental waders are being held by the police as evidence.

"The strangest thing about this," Booth says, "is that he was from an affluent upbringing and that he would be the last person in the world [who would need] to steal things." Additionally, Pickens has been indicted on federal securities fraud allegations and faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

In any case, Booth says, "I don't think he was that good of a fisherman."