Balloon Boy Hoax
Posted by Kyle L. Varnell (+3745) 13 years ago
What a scummy family.

Colorado sheriff: Runaway balloon saga was hoax
http://www.comcast.net/ar...lloon.Boy/

I hope they hit this family for every damn penny for this stunt and that these parents do some hard time.
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Posted by polar bear (+509) 13 years ago
How do we get the message across to the parents without indirectly harming the children. Poor child is going to be tormented at school. How do we protect the innocent here?
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Posted by Kyle L. Varnell (+3745) 13 years ago
How do we get the message across to the parents without indirectly harming the children.


You send them to jail. Why worry about harming the children?

The parents obviously didn't.

[This message has been edited by Kyle L. Varnell (10/18/2009)]
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Posted by Bruce Helland (+586) 13 years ago
So we should add injury to injury to create a better enviroment for the children? Send them to jail so the public can pay some more?

I think repayment for costs incurred plus community service would suffice. Maybe some time digging ditches with 'I'm an Idiot' on his shirt would help.... Similar treatment for the mother,also!

I do hope all the news networks learn from this, but I dont have high hopes
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Posted by howdy (+4944) 13 years ago
That poor kid will now go thru life being referred to as "balloon boy"...How awful...
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Posted by Kyle L. Varnell (+3745) 13 years ago
Send them to jail so the public can pay some more


You send them to jail for fraud, filing a false police report among other things Bruce. Using your liberal logic should having children automatically trump the crime the parent commits?

[This message has been edited by Kyle L. Varnell (10/18/2009)]
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Posted by Steve Craddock (+2732) 13 years ago
I'm inclined to agree with you Bruce - but then I factor in the risk this idiotic stunt posed to the policemen, sheriffs, national guardsmen, and others. When those risks are taken into consideration, it's apparent to me that the two parents should be heavily punished for their wanton disregard for the lives of our first-responders.

Remember, there were helicopters in the air that were going to try to snag the balloon - which would have been a very dangerous maneuver. I heard that several ultra-light pilots had volunteered to try to do the same thing. If one of those aircraft had crashed in the attempt to "save the child" - which was a real possibility - we'd be discussing a real tragedy right now.

My bottom line is this: If the father truly is guilty of cooking up this scheme, then justice will be robbed if he doesn't serve at least some time in prison.

[This message has been edited by Steve Craddock (10/18/2009)]
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Posted by howdy (+4944) 13 years ago
I have to agree with Steve, some time in jail seems appropriate in this case if it is truly a hoax....I just hope that little boy isn't made to feel guilty, for his dad going to jail, for his slip of the tongue that gave it away on the Larry King show...
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Posted by Christen LeBlanc Ramsey (+272) 13 years ago
most people agree that the parents are scum and should be held accountable for their actions. i think they should have to perform community service; maybe search and rescue to really understand that their bull$hit hoax wasn't funny or smart. naturally, recoup the monetary losses from those who were concerned for the welfare of their 6yr old child and went on their 'wild goose chase'.

the thing that really gets me about the whole scheme is that their children were in on it too... the entire family needs to be committed for a psychiatric evaluation. what type of people do this to their children and to obtain the public spotlight no less?
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+12288) 13 years ago
If you read the whole article, it mentions there had been calls to the house out of concern that the husband was beating the wife and/or kids. From the way the kids acted, I would guess he is a violent fellow whose family lives in terror of him. He should--if found guilty--spend some time in the hoosgow while his family gets help.

Apparently, a pseudo-news outlet was also involved. Great.
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Posted by howdy (+4944) 13 years ago
What do you mean by pseudo news outlet?...In what way were they involved?? apparently when the child was asked to say where he was during that event, he repeatedly threw up on camera...I think the kids must be under tremendous pressure...
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Posted by Kyle L. Varnell (+3745) 13 years ago
Apparently, a pseudo-news outlet was also involved


So Comcast News & the Associated Press are now to be considered "Pseudo-News Outlets" Amorette?
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+12288) 13 years ago
No, if you actually read the entire article, it said partway through that the authorities suspected that an organization that the authorities said "blurred the line between news and entertainment" may have known about the hoax in advance.

Read, people. Read. All the way down to the bottom. Sigh.
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Posted by Kyle L. Varnell (+3745) 13 years ago
that the authorities said "blurred the line between news and entertainment


Another dig at Fox News?
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Posted by howdy (+4944) 13 years ago
This is the part Amorette is referring to and she is right...I had not read the entire article as I had already read about it on another news site...Sorry Amorette...


Investigators are examining the possibility of other conspirators, "including the possibility that even some of the media outlets may have had some knowledge about this," Alderden said.

Documents show that a media outlet has agreed to pay money to the Heenes with regards to the balloon incident, Alderden said. He didn't name the media outlet, but said it was a show that blurs "the line between entertainment and news." It wasn't clear whether the deal was signed before or after the alleged hoax, or whether that media outlet was a possible conspirator.
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Posted by polar bear (+509) 13 years ago
I honestly doubt either parent will see the inside of a jail, much less a prison.
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Posted by Steve Craddock (+2732) 13 years ago
Chances are very good you're right, Polar - but felonies are involved and this is pretty high profile - anything could happen.
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Posted by Bruce Helland (+586) 13 years ago
Well, now that we tried and convicted him, lets see what happens.

Sorry Kyle, I dont think its part of the 'liberal agenda' to require something worthwhile out of this situation rather than locking people in prison. As usual, you try to take everything to extremes.

I would rather see some of the wall street and bank executives do time for the BS they have pulled.
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Posted by Kyle L. Varnell (+3745) 13 years ago
I dont think its part of the 'liberal agenda' to require something worthwhile out of this situation rather than locking people in prison


Something worthwhile is fine and dandy Bruce and I'm all for it. However you seem to be implying that "Doing Something Worthwhile" should trump the law.

I'm saying that they need to do time for their crime, which is what it is, and THEN do something worthwhile like community service and such.

[This message has been edited by Kyle L. Varnell (10/18/2009)]
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Posted by Wendy Wilson (+6165) 13 years ago
I think this whole family needs psychiatric care.
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Posted by Bruce Helland (+586) 13 years ago
No implication here Kyle. As posted in the 'zero tolerence' and 'three strikes and you're out' vein; common sense should prevail.

Prison time would suit the 'Young Frankenstein' mob mentality but who will care for the rest of this family? You and me pal.....

Gearing the punishment have a benefit to society? Makes sense to me. Can you explain the benefit of sending this person to prison?

If stupid was a crime we would all be in prison...
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Posted by howdy (+4944) 13 years ago
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Posted by Heath H (+641) 13 years ago
I don't think this whole family needs psychiatric care, Wendy. They are pursuing their happiness.

Yeah yeah, I know, they committed felonies even though they probably never intended to.

The hoaxing of the reality show addicts who watch CNN and FOX news because of the over-done coverage of situations like this shouldn't be demonized. Let the TV watchers criticize, but I bet they would agree, deep down inside, that they enjoyed the show.

It's a damn good thing no one was hurt trying to "rescue" the ghost rider in the box below the balloon. A helicopter crash would have ruined the gag.

Dad is motivated by money. IMO, make Dad pay for the "rescue" effort and let em go. If he can't (or won't) pay, any time some posters in this thread would have him spend in jail wouldn't be just.
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Posted by Chuck Schott (+1284) 13 years ago
I'm with you Wendy. The adults certainly have screws loose, and the kids no doubt have issues about acceptable behavior and consequences.
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Posted by Heath H (+641) 13 years ago
Wow! You guys can sure cast stones.
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6108) 13 years ago
I believe an appropriate punishment would be to have them completely ignored. If everyone, including their neighbors and coworkers, paid no attention to them whatsoever - not even acknowledging their existence - it would be the worst possible censure for media whores such as themselves.

It's what I try to do with what's their names ... um, Rush and Glenn, is it?
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Posted by Bridgier (+9430) 13 years ago
I just talked to Jesus there heath - he'd like his cross back.

That will teach me to post after reading these threads in an RSS reader that doesn't add the author's name to each post. I thought the rant in the "On War" thread was a creation of heath, not Jim. So anyways... once heath and Jim figure out who's more persecuted, Jesus would like his cross back. Also.

[This message has been edited by Bridgier (10/19/2009)]
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Posted by Heath H (+641) 13 years ago
I'm not persecuted. Just amazed at how hard everyone on this thread is being on the balloon dad. It's all just TV. TURN IT OFF. For once, I actually agree with Brian.
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Posted by Cory Cutting (+1272) 13 years ago
This was in the Denver Post today. I think it shows what we believe and hope cops are about. If you saw the TV story, the end of the chase, you will know about this part of the story. Really, if you have not seen the end of the chase, you will not quite understand the connection. This will just seem like an interview of a cop. But to have witnessed the passion of this man first hand, then read the story is amazing, in my opinion.

From the Denver Post:

I understand you've been trying to reach me," the caller says.
He gives his name, too fast for me to catch.

"I work with the Larimer County Sheriff's Office," he says.

There's only one person I've been trying to reach at the Larimer County Sheriff's Office.

The man in the red shirt, the first man to reach the homemade helium balloon so many of us believed was carrying a 6-year-old boy. We know now, of course, that it was not. We know now about Richard and Mayumi Heene and their alleged publicity stunt to win a reality-television show. We know more about the couple and their version of reality than we ever wanted to know.

Saturation point reached. Passed.

The man in the field remained a mystery. After I wrote about him Tuesday, about the ideals of parenthood he represented in his desperate dash toward the balloon, calls and e-mails came pouring in. Many people shared his heart that day. They ran with him across the farmer's field. They sat before the television sets and urged him forward. They wanted to know who he was.

He wasn't hard to find, but I didn't expect him to call back. He's a private person, his colleagues told me. He tells me he didn't read what I wrote about him. He doesn't read the paper. He takes a deep breath.

"What'd you want to know?" he asks.

He thought the boy was inside. The whole time he was following the balloon, after it landed, once he reached it, he believed that to be true. Cops say their work is 98 percent boredom and 2 percent terror, he tells me. In those first hours when the boy was thought to be in the balloon, he was in 2 percent territory.

"When an incident involves kids, there's an extra urgency," he says. "A lot of us have kids, and there's a separate place in our hearts for them. They're the most vulnerable among us, and we do what we have to do to protect them."

He'd been in Fort Collins when the radio call came in. Dispatch reported wind direction, and he headed southeast, along highways and then dirt roads, listening to the police radio, leaning over his steering wheel, scanning the sky.

When he saw the balloon, his first thought was how to stay with it and not drive into an irrigation ditch or through a farmer's fence. He had to backtrack a few times. He watched once as it started to descend only to be caught in a thermal and pushed skyward again.
Then he was in a farmer's field, standing next to his SUV, watching it drift toward the ground again.

"I stood there a couple seconds," he says. "I was worried it might get caught in another thermal."

He waited until it was about 200 feet from the ground. Then he started running.

"I just didn't want that balloon to get back off the ground without knowing," he says. The tethers were taped to the side of the balloon, and the first one came off as soon as he grabbed it. What they didn't know, he says, was how to approach the box. Richard Heene had claimed a million volts of electricity powered the craft.
"Here's this Dr. Wizard guy, and we don't know if he's accurate, if it's safe," he says. "We didn't want to create any more victims. When we finally got it pinned to the ground, there was a small door and we popped it open and there's nothing in there. I've got this pit burning in my stomach. That balloon hadn't stopped for 50 miles. It'd been six, seven, maybe 8,000 feet high. So, where did he go?"

You want to know whether he's angry now.

I spent about 40 minutes with him in the sheriff's offices Wednesday. He was cordial for a man who was clearly uncomfortable being interviewed. His bosses and colleagues "hounded" him into it, he says, sheepish. "I just don't look for publicity," he says. He sees himself as an investigator who was in the right place at the right time to do his job.

But symbols do not create themselves; they are vessels into which we pour our own emotions, which we invest with our own meaning. In a snapshot, he comes to represent duty and compassion; the Heenes, selfishness and greed.

No, he says, he's not angry. He's been a cop long enough to see a lot of stupid people do a lot of stupid things. "You get irritated because there are people out there who will go so far for attention and they don't think about the consequences," he says.

People know Heene's name, I tell him. They should know yours.

The man in the red shirt is Mike Byers, and he tells me this: He is the father of two boys, ages 16 and 11. In the past six months, he has handled two child-suicide cases. "What do you say to a parent who asks you why their 15-year-old shot himself?"

By which the investigator means this: It's all a matter of perspective, what matters and what, in the end, does not.
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