FORT COLLINS, Colorado – Prosecutors said Tuesday they haven't decided whether to file charges against the Colorado parents accused of falsely reporting their son was in a runaway balloon, sparking a massive rescue attempt before the boy was found at the family's Fort Collins home.
Sheriff's investigators turned their case over to the district attorney on Monday. Prosecutors are waiting for more information from the sheriff before deciding whether to file charges against Richard and Mayumi Heene, Larimer County district attorney's spokeswoman Linda Jensen said.
She would not say what kind of information prosecutors are waiting for or when a decision might be reached.
Sheriff Jim Alderden has said the Heenes were lying when they reported their 6-year-old son Falcon was in a homemade helium balloon that lifted off from their back yard in Fort Collins on Oct. 15, drifted across two counties and landed in a farm field.
Alderden said the whole thing was a hoax to generate publicity for the couple, who have appeared on the ABC reality show "Wife Swap" and were trying to arrange another show.
Richard Heene's attorney, David Lane, claims Alderden broke privacy laws by publicly saying social services were looking into the welfare of Falcon and the Heenes' two other sons, ages 8 and 10.
Lane wrote a letter to the district attorney Monday asking for an investigation and prosecution of Alderden.
"We have received his letter and will review it and act accordingly," Jensen said. She would not elaborate.
Richard Heene has publicly denied the episode was a hoax, but investigators said Mayumi Heene admitted to them that it was a publicity stunt.
Mayumi Heene's attorney, Lee Christian, declined to comment on his clients' alleged confession.
He said Tuesday the couple hasn't split up.
"The family is together trying to make it through all of this," Christian wrote in an e-mail to The Associated Press.