Hasford had been listed as AWB (absent with books) after checking out 87 volumes and 500 periodicals from the Cal Poly library in two weeks last December. Campus police plan to ask the local district attorney to charge the author with grand theft. Hasford's attorney, Louis Blau, contends that "most of those books were purchased at library sales."
Who hasn't forgotten to return an occasional book to the library? But Gustav Hasford may have overdone it. Hasford is an Academy Award nominee for his work in adapting his 1979 Viet Nam War novel, The Short-Timers, into Stanley Kubrick's film Full Metal Jacket. He was wanted last week by campus police at the California Polytechnic State University, who had discovered nearly 10,000 library books, including seven overdue from Cal Poly, in storage lockers Hasford rented in San Luis Obispo. The books came from libraries as far afield as Australia.