Sheriff Alderden said he was pursuing criminal charges in Colorado’s “balloon boy” saga, at a news conference Sunday. The Sheriff, whose original statements regarding the balloon boy incident were that he believed it was not a hoax, has since changed his mind reports Fox News and CNN.
Richard Heene’s report that his six year old son, Falcon Heene, had taken flight in a runaway balloon on Thursday had the world glued to their TV sets. Military, news, and local authorities followed this balloon for over an hour in their helicopters giving civilization a birds eye view to the runaway balloon. When the balloon came down in Colorado, it was empty. The boy was hiding at home and never left the house.
Saturday night, armed with a search warrant, deputies searched the family home of Richard Heene, the boy’s father and carried away several boxes and a computer. They would not elaborate on what they were looking for.
Sheriff Alderden spoke to press stating the authorities are going to pursue criminal charges in the balloon boy case. He conveyed he was disappointed that he couldn’t seek more serious charges in this incident stating: “We were looking at Class 3 misdemeanor, which hardly seems serious enough given the circumstances.” Alderden said. “We are talking to the district attorney, federal officials to see if perhaps there aren’t additional federal charges that are appropriate in this circumstance.”
Once the dust settled and the world was relieved the boy was safe, this bizarre situation started to unravel and it appeared to be a hoax. One of the first clues was that Richard Heene stated at his first interview that he called the FAA first before his wife called 911. Then Falcon Heene was asked during an interview why he was hiding and he replied, “you said it was for the show”, This statement immediately raised questions about the balloon boy episode being a hoax. Falcon Heene threw up two times during later interviews when he was asked this question again.
The Heene’s family video raised questions about the balloon boy saga once again as it shows the family doing a countdown before Richard Heene pulls a cord for the lift off. He has said the balloon was supposed to be tethered to the ground when it lifted off, and no one was supposed to be aboard.
Richard Heene appears to be basking in the limelight and enjoying the control he has over it. Saturday morning at 5am he came outside his home and promised the media some very big news at 10am. At 10am Heene came back outside with a cardboard box and told reporters to put all their questions in the box and he will answer them later. That was the end of his big news.
TMZ broke the story that for the last few months Richard Heene has been pitching his ideas to various networks for a reality TV show about his family. Many believe this may have been his attempt at a “jump start” to this show.
Reports this morning are that the producer from ABC’s “Wife Swap” show had a show in development with Richard Heene and has since called off the deal. TLC reports that Heene pitched a show to them months ago, which they passed on.