Lifetime Pulls Heene ‘Wife Swap’ Episode After Balloon Boy Mom Admits Hoax

Lifetime has pulled an episode of Wife Swap featuring the Heene family scheduled to air on Oct 29. Mayumi Heene, mother of the so-called Balloon Boy, admitted to police investigators earlier this week the whole incident was a hoax.


Falcon Heene, dubbed the Balloon Boy in the national media, was reported missing on Oct 15. An experimental hot air balloon had allegedly broken free from the family’s home and the six-year-old boy was initially feared to be inside of it.

When Falcon Heene was later found hiding in the family garage, speculation the balloon boy incident was an elaborate hoax to drum up publicity began to escalate. The Heene family had previously appeared on Wife Swap and was allegedly attempting to land their own family-themed reality TV show.

In an affidavit filed by police authorities this week, Balloon Boy mom Mayumi Heene reportedly admitted she and husband Richard Heene had planned the incident as a publicity hoax. Richard Heene has previously repeatedly denied to both police and the media that the incident was a hoax.

“Mayumi described that she and Richard Heene devised this hoax approximately two weeks earlier… She and Richard had instructed their three children to lie to authorities as well as the media regarding the hoax,” the affidavit said.

In response to the controversy, Lifetime had pulled a follow-up episode of Wife Swap featuring the Heene family scheduled to air on Oct 29.

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Annaka Turner

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