Ethan Couch continues to make a mockery of the system. Fleeing to Mexico after he violated his probation by drinking alcohol at a now famous beer pong party, he kept partying. Just in one night in a Mexican strip club, he an up a tab of $2,000. Wow!
Couch remains in Mexico, brazenly claiming that his rights were violated when he was apprehended, and delaying his inevitable return home.
His enabling mother, Tonya Couch, is being extradited back to Fort Worth where she faces up to 10 years in prison for helping her son escape to Mexico after he broke his probation.
Discrepancy in Judge ‘s Sentencing Decisions
Although each case is different, the judge who leniently sentenced Couch in 2013 threw the book at another teen a decade earlier. Eric Bradlee Miller was 16 years old when he fatally crashed into a 19-year-old and then sped away. His blood alcohol concentration was .11 percent.
Miller appeared in juvenile court after being charged with murder and failure to render aid. He only had a court appointed attorney due to his financial status. After hearing evidence of the teen’s troubled childhood, Judge Boyd sentenced him to 20 years incarceration. During sentencing, Judge Boyd acknowledged Miller’s sad childhood and that his mother was a drug addict. There was no affluenza in the Miller house.
By Comparison, Couch Got a Slap on the Wrist
Ten years later, another 16 year-old teen appeared in the same courtroom in one of the most horrific drunk driving accidents any one has ever seen. Ethan Couch’s BAC was .24 percent, three times the legal limit. He killed four people and severely injured a young man I represented when he crashed into a group of people trying to repair a disabled vehicle.
But the judge only sentenced Couch to 10 years of probation and limited time in a lock down detention facility. My client’s family, the other victims’ families, their attorneys and I were in attendance during the trial and all of us were all in a state of shock. The world was outraged.
What Happens Next?
Couch will presumably be jailed (“detained” in the juvenile justice world) at a scheduled hearing on January 19th, or whenever he decides to return to Tarrant County, until he turns 19 in April.
He will remain on probation for approximately seven more years. It is widely assumed he will violate his probation and finally serve hard time.