The "balloon boy" parents in Fort Collins, Colorado, concocted the stunt to market themselves for a television show, Larimer Country Sheriff Department said Sunday.It's interesting how the media scrutiny of this case has been more about the Dad's quest for fame, rather than a couple of serially unfit parents who likely have some real issues. It makes you wonder how this case might have played out differently if Falcon's name was Je'Vontray instead.
Larimer County Sheriff Jim Alderden said at a press conference that while police were searching for the boy, Falcom Heene Thursday, the boy may not have been hiding in the rafters of the family's garage. He may have been two blocks down the road playing on the swing in the city park.
So far Larimer County Sheriff Department has not filed any criminal charges against the parents, Richard and Mayumi Heene, who falsely reported to the police that their 6-year-old son was inside a flying balloon. Nor the parents have been arrested.
But Alderden said he would recommend charges of conspiracy, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, making a false report to police and attempting to influence a public servant.
Each of the serious charges against the parents would carry a maximum sentence of six years in prison and a fine of 500,000 dollars if convicted.
According to the sheriff, all three of the Heenes' sons knew of the Thursday hoax, but they were unlikely to face charges because of their ages. Their oldest son is 10. Alderden called the whole event "a hoax" and a "publicity stunt".
The boy's mother has appeared on the reality TV show Wife Swap. In an interview on CNN on Thursday, when asked by his father Heene why he didn't come out of the attic when his name was repeatedly called, the boy said: "You guys said that, hmm, we did this for the show."
Seriously, imagine if the child was one of Keyshia Cole's many nephews, and Neffe, Frankie, and SoulLow (or whatever that guy's name is) were the parents instead. I doubt the convo would be as much about "the magnetic pull of reality TV", as much as it would be an indictment of wayward parenting.
Is all I'm sayin'.
Question: What sort of charges should the Heene parents' face for this farce? How might this have been perceived differently if these parents and kids were black or brown?!?
"Balloon boy" parents concocted stunt to market themselves, says sheriff [ChinaView]