Richard and Mayumi Heene got sentences this morning for wasting everyone’s time with their balloon hoax. (See here for a reminder if you’ve somehow forgotten that glorious week in October for which the highlight was video of a six-year-old boy vomiting on national TV.) The jail sentences are fairly light (Richard Heene is going to spend 30 days in jail full time only) but the couple is also being hit with mountain bills from the various local, state, and federal agencies that had their time wasted by this stupid bid for public attention. Per the article, the bill is currently sitting at $47,000, and could go up.
I think the judge for the case put it best:
“In summary,” Schapanski said in imposing Richard Heene’s sentence, “what this case is about is deception, exploitation — exploitation of the children of the Heenes, exploitation of the media and exploitation of people’s emotions — and money.”
Obviously the legal system in Colorado isn’t taking this one lightly. It’d be nice if Judge Schapanski could say similar stern things to, say, Peckman (he of the UFO commission ballot initiative) but I suppose wasting a lot of public time and money isn’t illegal if you’re just a deluded (yet arguably honest) crank.