Texas rich kid who killed 4 in drunken car crash spared jail

Great. Now the only question I am asking is, how much was the judge paid to come up with this sentence?

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Wealthy brat Ethan  Couch killed four people, including a mother and daughter, while blacked-out  drunk and driving 70 mph on a rural road in June. Defense attorneys said the boy  suffered from ‘affluenza’ and blamed the boy’s parents, saying they gave him  everything he wanted and didn’t teach him about consequences.

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 A juvenile court judge sentenced 16-year-old Ethan Couch to 10 years' probation Tuesday for the drunken driving crash that killed four people.

abc 8 WFAA

Ethan Couch, 16, was sentenced to 10 years’ probation Tuesday for a drunken  crash that killed four people.

A spoiled Texas teen who killed four in a drunken driving accident dodged  prison and was sentenced to probation instead after defense lawyers argued his  wealthy parents never taught him right from wrong.

Ethan Couch, 16, was facing 20 years behind bars for the horrific June  wreck, but instead walked out of a Fort Worth courtroom Tuesday with 10 years’  probation.

The rich brat’s legal team said he needed counseling, not hard time, and  proposed sending him to a posh Southern California treatment facility that would  cost his family $500,000 a year.

Couch was drunk and high on valium when he smashed into a disabled car on the side of a road near Burleson, Tex., killing four people.

5 NBCDFW

Couch was drunk and high on valium  when he smashed into a disabled car on the side of a road near Burleson, Tex.,  killing four people.

For now, he was set to remain at a juvenile detention center until  authorities determined his fate.

State District Judge Jean Boyd’s decision to let the teen walk had the  victims’ families outraged.

Breanna Mitchell, 24, was killed in the crash. Authorities said Couch was going 70 mph when he rammed into her disabled vehicle.

In Memory of Breanna Mitchell @  Facebook

Breanna Mitchell, 24, was killed in  the crash. Authorities said Couch was going 70 mph when he rammed into her  disabled vehicle.

“Money always seems to keep [Couch] out of trouble,” Eric Boyles, who lost his wife and daughter in the wreck, told  the Star-Telegram newspaper.

“Ultimately today, I felt that money did prevail. If [he] had been any other  youth, I feel like the circumstances would have been different.”

The fatal crash occurred on June 15 when Couch, loaded on booze and Valium,  lost control of his speeding Ford F-350 pick-up and smashed into a broken-down  car beside a road outside Burleson.

Seven other teens were riding in Couch's truck, including two in the flatbed area. One of those teens spent several months in a coma and remains paralyzed. 

5 NBCDFW

Seven other teens were riding in  Couch’s truck, including two in the flatbed area. One of those teens spent  several months in a coma and remains paralyzed.

Breanna Mitchell, 24, the stranded car’s driver, was killed instantly, along  with three Good Samaritans who were helping her: mother and daughter Hollie  Boyles, 52, and Shelby Boyles, 21; and youth pastor Brian Jennings, 41.

Seven teens were riding in Couch’s car at the time. Two, who were sitting in  the truck bed, were critically injured.

Youth pastor Brian Jennings, 41, was helping Mitchell with her car when he was struck and killed. 

Alsbury Baptist Church @ Facebook

Youth pastor Brian Jennings, 41, was  helping Mitchell with her car when he was struck and killed.

One of them, Sergio Molina, remains paralyzed and brain damaged after  several months in a coma, and can only communicate by blinking his eye, the Star-Telegram reported.

Authorities said Couch was going 70 mph on the rural 40 mph stretch, and a  breath test showed his blood-alcohol-content was .24 — triple the legal driving  limit for someone over 21.

Hollie Boyles, 52, and her daughter, Shelby Boyles, 21 were also killed. The pair lived near the crash site and were helping Mitchell when Couch slammed into them. 

Facebook/© Facebook

Hollie Boyles, 52, and her daughter,  Shelby Boyles, 21 were also killed. The pair lived near the crash site and were  helping Mitchell when Couch slammed into them.

During the trial, prosecutors said Couch and his pals had been partying with  beer they stole from Walmart, and were on another booze run when the crash  occurred.

In all, 11 people were injured. Local authorities said the crash scene was  the most horrific they’ve encountered.

A witness for the defense, psychologist Dr. G. Dick Miller, blamed the boy’s  parents.

Local authorities said the crash scene was among the most gruesome they'd ever seen. 

5 NBCDFW

Local authorities said the crash  scene was among the most gruesome they’d ever seen.

Miller testified that Couch was the troubled product of a broken home who  got whatever he wanted from his wealthy parents and didn’t understand  consequences.

Miller called the teen a victim of “affluenza,” a rich-kid syndrome that led  him to believe money solved everything.

Eric Boyles lost his wife Hollie and his daughter, Shelby. He told reporters that the judge's decision 'only makes the healing process that much greater.'

CBS DFW 11

Eric Boyles lost his wife Hollie and  his daughter, Shelby. He told reporters that the judge’s decision ‘only makes  the healing process that much greater.’

Couch was never disciplined, abused alcohol and had “freedoms no young  person should have,” including being allowed to drive when he was 13, Miller  said.

“The teen never learned to say that you’re sorry if you hurt someone,”  Miller said, according to the Star-Telegram. “If you hurt someone, you sent him  money.”

The families of his victims said money wouldn’t buy their loved ones  back.

Breanna Mitchell’s mother, Marla Mitchel, wore some of her cremated  daughter’s ashes in a locket around her neck during the trial, according to local reports.

She told the Star-Telegram, “[Couch] is not free. None of us  knows what God’s plan is. He has not escaped judgment. That is in the hands of a  higher power.”

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/wealthy-16-year-old-killed-4-drunken-crash-spared-jail-article-1.1544508#ixzz2nEvODIpL

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