Our TV Shows

Got a Tip?

Call TMZ at (888) 847-9869 or Click Here

Guy Claims He Helped Plan Balloon Boy Hoax

10/17/2009 8:25 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

A man who claims he once worked for Richard Heene says Heene was obsessed with becoming famous, wanted to get his own show, and had an idea for a massive media stunt that involved a "weather balloon" that "resembles a UFO." Sound familiar?

Robert Thomas claims, in an interview with Gawker, that Heene believed such a stunt would "be the most significant UFO-related news event to take place since the Roswell Crash of 1947."

Thomas said Heene was "driven by ego and fame" after appearing on "Wife Swap." He says Heene's idea for a show was something like "'MythBusters'-meets-mad scientist."

Thomas says he worked for Heene from March through May 2009.

Thomas came out earlier in the day saying he had proof the entire incident was a hoax and wanted to be paid for it. Gawker openly admits they did in fact pay Thomas.


No Avatar


His wife looks like she has no brains. He looks like an wife/kids abusive freak.

Our engineer friend first saw that on TV and said, "there's no kid in there, look at the way it's leaning". Shame he wasn't around to convince the people who got sucked in by this story that it wasn't worth 2 seconds of videotaping.

1796 days ago

too sad    

i guess when the mother was taken into questioning
she let the cat out of the bag ....... would like to know exacttly how good her english really is .
charge them for all the costs of damage

1796 days ago

Richard Heene    

This is Richard again.

I wanted to clarify my earlier statements as I feel they were misunderstood.

-I wanted to have my family on tv and using the balloon was a fun and exciting way to accomplish this.There is nothing wrong with that, people do it all the time. Every day as a matter of fact.
-We do these types of activities regularly, so it is not unusual for us. The only unfortunate item is that Falcon was missing, and we alerted the authorities. The byproduct of which was being on tv.
-Falcon was in the attic for only 5 hours. Any scared little 6 year old would hide in an attic for 5 hours when people he knows are calling his name.
-Now that we find ourselves here, in the media, which is what we were trying to do in the first place, we want to capitalize on the experience, and be on tv more. We feel we have stories to tell that people are interested in, even if TLC doesn't think so.
-We are working very hard to see what we can make of this situation. It seems we can make a lot of money and be famous. This would make us very happy, we've tried before with little success. We think we deserve this attention and will use the spotlight wisely. If everyone will just keep watching and talking about us, that's what makes people famous.

Thank you,

Richard Heene

1796 days ago

you just don't get it    

Gosh bob #104
Wow. Did you figure that out all by yourself. I never would have guessed. Keep up the good work Sherlock.

1796 days ago

nicole leollee    

after pretty much bashing and tearing apart his very existence..he still is a human regardless, and fame is a bitch for some of us especially when you've had a taste. it can be hard to let it go..some people have done a lot of f***ed up things to get their 15min.. i just hope he doesn't crack under all the scrutiny and do something really stupid. he will get whats coming to him..if it already hasn't since now he knows created a life that's going to be filled ridicule for him and his family.

1796 days ago


I think it is stupid. Not just on their part but everyone as viewers. They were doing this to become famous and that is exactly what is happening. That is all I have been hearing about. I think that everyone should just leave them alone, not because I feel sorry for them but because this is just plain stupid. The press is doing exactly what these people wanted them to do.

1796 days ago


Here's what really happened;

Falcon did get trapped in the balloon compartment and it took off. We flew within a few meters of the balloon with our spacecraft and beamed little Falcon out of the instrument compartment and into a cardboard box in the attic above his family's garage.

We originally asked Mr. Heene to cover up what happened but the events surrounding Falcon are going to be revealed anyways on November 3rd when we arrive over every city in the world.

We will solve all your problems because we are the Visitors and we come in peace.

1796 days ago


Richard Heene (the father) is HAWT. He can slam his meat in me anytime. Call me!

1796 days ago


The Father Heene is VERY CREEPY, a sociopathic narcissist creep.I think he could be very dangerous and something like being caught in this shameful scam will have him go off and hurt his family and go berzerk.I heard his previous female landlord on KFI Friday night tell of horror stories of deceit, non payment of rent, she had to evict them as was fearful of his obnoxious dangerous threats against her. This crazy, psychotic family trashed her place in Burbank in the 90's. He is lacking good character, seems to be just a low life criminal that should be housed in a jail cell and forced to pay for the enormous cost to respond with all agencies, while taking precious resources away from truly needed real emergency situations. This is a subhuman of the lowest form. His wife should divorce him and take those kids. Maybe CPServices should intervene. I'd cheer when the handcuffs are placed and he's being filmed for all media as he's hauled off to a nice jail cell.

1796 days ago


You have to check out this idiots myspace page.

1796 days ago


Heene being charged! Breaking news on CNN! HA finaly justice!

1796 days ago


Ha Ha poster 99....Heene is being charged! Breaking News on CNN now!

1796 days ago


Ha..breaking news on CNN .....someone is possilby going to jail! Finaly Justice!

1796 days ago


Put that tool in Jail! What a complete psycho!Maybe get a job loser dad. CPS needs to take these kids asap and get them to the best parents of all the Kate plus eight plus three equals so much chaotic glee. Put them all in balloons and send them to space! Oh yes and with the cast the view.

1796 days ago


wow....if that is truly the real Richard and his kids are really homeschooled...wowwww.. I truly feel sorry for those bratty, wild, out of control children. They are 100% product of their parents' irresponsible raising and will turn out bigger morons than their Richard and Myling.

1796 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

Around The Web