When Ethan Couch was 16, he slammed his drunk car into a group of people helping stranded drivers along a road in Texas. The crash killed four people and injured nine others. His lawyers defended him by using the “affluenza” defense, saying that his wealthy upbringing left him so spoiled that he didn’t understand right from wrong. It’s a claim that angered many of the victims’ families, and it still does today.
Couch has escaped prison time for the murders, but he’s still on probation until 2024. He also has to wear an ankle monitor, obey a curfew and take regular drug tests. He’s also forbidden from having a cell phone or driving without a license.
Despite the lenient sentence, the family of the victims are still seeking more justice. They’re suing the city of Fort Worth and the police department over how they handled the case. In a new documentary, the director of the original film argues that there’s no question that the city was negligent.
The lead prosecutor on the initial case is also frustrated with the way things have gone. He believes Couch is a dangerous criminal and that it’s only a matter of time before he re-offends again. He also calls out Couch’s attorneys for defending his client by claiming that he didn’t use illegal drugs. That’s a lie and he should be arrested for lying. He and his mother Tonya tried to flee to Mexico in order to avoid jail, but were eventually caught.