Charles Westmoreland, Jr. (more commonly known and referred to as "D. B. Cooper") was one of Fox River's longest-serving inmates, having served thirty-two years.
Before he was jailed in Fox River, he ran under the name of "D.B. Cooper" as an aircraft hijacker who, on November 24, 1971, after receiving a ransom payout of $5,000,000, leapt from the back of a Boeing 727 as it was flying over the Pacific Northwest somewhere over the southern Cascades. The case was never solved, however, as he was arrested for Vehicular Manslaughter, not the hijacking. To save embarrassment, the government announced that only a million was stolen, when in truth, five million was stolen. His wife died soon after his incarceration, leaving his daughter alone. (1x11)
A grandfather clause in the prison's policy allowed him to keep a grey cat named Marilyn. The DOC had repeatedly attempted to transfer Westmoreland to other facilities, though he was unwilling to leave Marylin behind and became adept at using legal loopholes to block his transfers. According to a news article appearing in Michael's apartment, he is 59 years old at the time of the series. Many people, including Michael Scofield came to believe that he may have been the infamous airline hijacker D.B. Cooper. At first Charles denies this (1x1) but later confesses to Michael by showing him a one hundred dollar bill from the hijacking. (1x11)
A relatively quiet and gentle man, Westmoreland took great pains to stay out of other people's business, including Michael's escape attempt, despite Michael's efforts to recruit him. He and Captain Brad Bellick enjoyed a mutual respect for many years until Westmoreland refused to tell Bellick what he'd seen after a guard brought by Belick was murdered outside Westmoreland's cell during a prison riot. Shortly thereafter, Westmoreland found Marylin (his cat) dead in his cell. Westmoreland quietly retaliated by starting a fire in the guards' break room and making it appear as if Bellick's negligence had caused the fire. This also allowed Michael and the P.I. crew access to the guard's room in order to dig a hole for their escape.
Upon learning that he would not be allowed to visit his terminally-ill daughter until after her death, Westmoreland became desperate to escape. He finally confirmed that he was D.B. Cooper by showing Michael a one hundred dollar bill matching the serial number of the first bill from the fabled hijacking. (1x11)
Westmoreland attacked Bellick when Bellick discovered the hole the team dug in the guards' room. He successfully subdued Bellick but was severely wounded by a piece of glass. During the escape, he collapsed in the infirmary from loss of blood. He told Michael to go on without him, but not before revealing the location of the D.B. Cooper money (under a silo at the Double K Ranch, just outside of Tooele, Utah), and revealing that sum was $5 million, rather than the one million generally assumed. He is later found dead by Warden Pope.
The Fox River Eight spend much of their time after the escape searching for the money.
Westmoreland appears in Michael's dream
Personality and traits
A quiet and gentle man, Westmoreland often tries to stay out of other people's businesses, because of his long term sentence and his attitude, he seems to be respected among the prison and he tries to keep his reputation in tact, telling Bellick that 'a rat doesn't last long in here.' He often feels pity for others, including Tweener, shaking his head at T-Bag's antics, but knows he can't do anything about it. He feels great regret for what he did to to the woman after the infamous Hijacking, accidently running her over while driving his car, he seems to have never gotten over it. Charles loves his daughter greatly, and when notified that his daughter was dying and he wasn't allowed to see her due to him still being a 'threat,' he decided to break out with Michael to see his daughter for the last time. Sadly, his escape was foiled by the hands of Brad Bellick, but he still had his daughter on his mind during his final moments, telling Michael to send her "Daddy's love" after telling him the location of the five million dollars he'd stashed in Utah, which later, become a main plot during Season 2.
Notes and references