MANATEE -- Richard Heene, the Colorado man who led the nation to believe that his little boy had floated off in a helium balloon as part of an elaborate hoax last year, has moved to Manatee County.
TMZ.com reported that Heene and his family have moved to Manatee, where Heene's mother resides.
Early this morning, Heene, who was sentenced to 90 days in jail in Colorado because of the hoax, registered with the Manatee County Sheriff's Office as a convicted felon, according to the sheriff's office website.
Convicted felons are required to register with authorities when they move into the county. Registrants are photographed and fingerprinted, said Manatee jail spokesman Lt. Randy Warren.
The nation was transfixed in October 2009 with the sight of the silvery balloon, which resembled a flying saucer, hurtling through the sky on live television, and the horrifying thought that Heene's son was aboard the runaway balloon. In the end, it was all a publicity stunt by a family broke and desperate for attention and money after networks kept rejecting their reality TV show pitches.
“I’m very, very sorry. And I want to apologize to all the rescue workers out there, and the people that got involved in the community,” said Heene, a UFO-obsessed backyard scientist who turned to storm-chasing and reality TV after his Hollywood acting career bombed.