| Crime |

Richard Heene, Balloon Boy dad: His hard-ass home detention, complete with ankle bracelet

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

Yesterday, we told you that Balloon Boy dad Richard Heene had been given permission to serve the remainder of his ninety-day sentence for attempting to influence a public servant (by insisting that his young son Falcon was in an "experimental craft" floating over Northern Colorado) at home.

Sounds cushy, but Larimer County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Eloise Campanella insists that it's actually quite rigorous.

"We have been told we have the tightest home detention in the country," she says -- and in the case of Heene, the LCSO is determined to prove it.

"Heene went on home detention on March 17," Campanella says. "He will wear the ankle device until April 4. Under these conditions. he must be at home twelve hours a day, and in the twelve hours he's out, he's allowed to go to work, classes, lawyer, doctor visits, etc. -- and he will not get permission to be out for more than twelve hours.

"Staff will check on him both at home and at work," she continues. "If they knock on the door at two o'clock in the morning, he must be there, and he must open the door."

Presently, Heene is working for a contractor, Campanella notes, "so he must provide a bid sheet to prove his whereabouts. And he's not allowed to go to restaurants, for example. His wife could probably get food from a restaurant for him, though. And he can be breathalyzed by staff and patrol at any time. He will not know when that's going to happen."

Given the national embarrassment over the incident suffered by Sheriff Jim Alderden, who said on the Today show that he nearly threw up when he heard Heene denying wrongdoing after pleading guilty -- and because Heene lawyer David Lane has publicly challenged restitution charges -- such checks could take place early and often.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.