Saturday, October 17, 2009
Police: Child Protective Services Contacted about Balloon Boy
Larimer County Sheriff Jim Alderden told reporters Friday that although his department did not believe that Mayumi and Richard Heene were attempting a hoax in announcing their son had lifted away on a balloon -- the department planned to re-interview the family on Saturday and has contacted Child Protective Services about the family.
He said that Child Protective Services has been contacted, but that the agency was instructed not to contact the family until police re-interview the family first this weekend.
Sheriff Alderden said that the family will be interviewed again because of a comment made by Falcon, 6, on CNN's "Larry King Live." In the interview, when fill-in host Wolf Blitzer asked why the boy didn't come out of his hiding place when he was called, Falcon looked at both of his parents, and said, "You guys said we did this for the show." The comment increased the public's speculation that yesterday's balloon drama was a hoax.
The sheriff, however, stated that police believed the parents, saying, "We were convinced yesterday after talking to the parents, and having investigators on the scene, that the parents were being honest. They appropriately expressed statements…and emotions that were consistent with what was taking place.”
"Our people didn’t think this could be fake or was being faked," the sheriff also told reporters. He later added that he thought it "just seems inconceivable" that a "hyperactive" boy could be coaxed in such a way.
He also revealed that the Heene's first called the FAA, then a local news agency, and then 911.
Sheriff Alderden said investigators searched the Heene home three times and did not find Falcon, adding that reports that he was found in a box were erroneous.
If the incident is determined to be hoax, Alderden said the Heenes could face misdemeanor charges. "If there's criminal conduct, we certainly would seek restitution,” he said.
Police officials say they still have three videos to review, including one taken by the family moments before the balloon took off.
Police: Child Protective Services Contacted about Balloon Boy at The Insider
Family Is Being Investigated for Possible Balloon Hoax - The Lede Blog - NYTimes.com
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