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Balloon boy charges will be filed – Sunday press conference

Heene family photo on Wife Swap

Heene family photo on Wife Swap

The Larimer County Sherriff’s department held a press conference this morning.  They announced that the Heene family balloon boy incident was indeed a publicity stunt.  The Heene family did this with the hopes of marketing themselves for a reality TV show sometime in the future. 

Sheriff Jim Alderden stated: “It has been determine this was a hoax, a publicity stunt.”

The sheriff’s office conducted an investigation about the weather balloon, and have determined that it would in fact hold the weight of a 37 pound boy.   The Sheriff stated said that at the time of the 911 call about the boy and the weather balloon was believable at the time, and that they were in a recovery mode of a 6-year-boy.  The Sheriff stated that “We have discovered that these people are actors.”

The CNN interview with Wolf Blitzer when Falcon Heene said, “We did it for the show,” the Sheriff said was an “ah-ha moment” for the police.  They wanted the Heene family to open up to them, because a confession would make their job easier, so they had to make it appear to the media as though they agreed with the family in thinking that this was not a hoax. 

The Sheriff’s office did ask the family to take a polygraph on Saturday, and stated that they didn’t ask the family to do the test on Friday because the media put a great deal of stress on the family that day, and any results may have been true.

The Sheriff was unable to confirm or deny that the family passed the polygraph tests or if there was a confession.  But he did say that they obtained evidence to file these charges: conspiracy, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, false reporting to authorities, and attempting to influence a public servant.  The sheriff expects the charges to be filed sometime next week. 

Federal charges may also be charged, and restitution will be sought, the Sheriff said.  Child and Family services has also been called and they will conduct an investigation about placement of the children.  The children were well aware of the entire hoax the Sheriff  said.

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