Father of Victim Not Surprised That ‘Affluenza’-Excuse Teen Has Gone Missing
Authorities fear ‘affluenza’ teen may have fled the country but vow: ‘We’re going to find you’.
Authorities continue their hunt for the missing Texas teenager convicted of killing four people while driving drunk in 2013 who is now wanted for allegedly violating the terms of his probation. At this point in her illustrious career, Serena Williams does not need another accolade to prove she’s one of the greatest tennis players of all time.TARRANT COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – The United States Marshals Service is now circulating a ‘Wanted’ poster for missing North Texas “affluenza” teen Ethan Couch.
Terry Grisham, a spokesman for the Tarrant County Sheriff’s Department, tells PEOPLE that the nationwide search for 18-year-old Ethan Couch and his mother, Tonya, rolls on, but has so far proved a fruitless endeavor. After Ethan Couch crashed his pickup truck at more than 65 mph into a group of people who had stopped to help a stranded motorist, he was sentenced to drug-and-alcohol-free probation and time in a rehabilitation center.
Ethan Couch, 18, was placed on Tarrant County’s most wanted list after his parole officer wasn’t able to reach him or his mother Tanya, with whom he lives. But following the emergence this month of a video claiming to show 18-year-old Couch playing beer pong, authorities launched an investigation to determine whether it was the “affluenza” teen. “With the wealth and the wherewithal that his family has, it’s going to be a tough assignment for us to find him,” Tarrant County Sheriff Dee Anderson said, according to the Dallas Morning News.
Tarrants County deputies have been searching for Ethan Couch, the spoiled 18-year-old whose infamous affluenza defense got him just probation time for a 2013 DUI crash that killed four people, ever since he missed a Dec. 11 probation meeting. Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter. “The search goes on and it is happening in many different places; there isn’t just one posse out there, trying to track him down,” Grisham explains. “Some day, we’ll come up with him.
Around the same time those papers were filed, Grisham says a six-second video emerged on social media allegedly showing Couch at a party, involved in a game of beer pong. Or so we’re told; it has seemed like forever since members of both parties did the whole give-to-get and made a deal that works to the benefit of their constituents. Officials went to the house where he was allegedly staying with his mom, and found the place empty — save for a pinball machine, according to Reuters. The video immediately sparked an investigation into whether Couch had violated his probation. “Until he is physically back in a juvenile court room, his case will remain a juvenile court case,” Grisham says. “It can’t be moved with him gone, and he knew that; he has good lawyers. And the subtext is just as important: To get the ban lifted, Republicans agreed to an extension of wind and solar tax credits, leading to a phase-out, and excluded any measures that might block major Obama administration environmental regulations.
This energy compromise within the larger spending bill represents the kind of deal-making that some of us remember as the best of congressional bipartisanship. It’s their success — and the way they have handled it — that Couch’s attorneys argue contributed to his reckless behavior. “Instead of the golden rule, which was ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto you,’ [Couch] was taught we have the gold, we make the rules at the Couch household,” G.
Couch admitted to the 2013 crash but didn’t get any jail time, thanks in part to an unusual defense strategy: A psychologist who testified on the wealthy teen’s behalf said Couch was afflicted with “affluenza,” which made him unable to distinguish right from wrong due to his privileged upbringing. “I’m frustrated,” Anderson said Thursday. “To have done what he did, take four innocent lives, impact those families in a way that none of us can fathom and never once express any sentiment of remorse, never ever had any guilt feelings or bad feelings — it was all about him, what could he do to get out of it?” At the time of the crash, Couch was 16 and had a blood-alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit. Couch dodged jail time two years ago after his attorneys successfully argued that the rich kid suffered from “affluenza,” and his spoiled upbringing meant he didn’t understand the consequences of his actions because his parents never set limits. U.S. soccer great Abby Wambach will need to forgive us for not heeding her plea to “forget me” after she played her final game and retired this week. She deleted her Twitter account and said she hopes the next generation of soccer players accomplishes things so great that “I’m no longer remembered.” That’s just not going to happen. The man in the video footage who is suspected to be Couch does not appear to be holding anything in his hands, but merely claps as another man dives into a table, collapsing it.
Miller said Couch’s parents “had an adversarial relationship” and that every time they had a fight, they took him to Toys “R” Us and tried to buy his happiness. The game’s all-time hits leader, banned since 1989 for betting on games — including those involving his Cincinnati Reds — had for years tried to cut a sympathetic figure. But thanks to former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Denton and Waco will receive special assistance improving services and engaging residents. Launched last April, Bloomberg Philanthropies’ What Works Cities initiative now supports 21 cities in 15 states and plans to reach 100 cities by the end of 2017.
However, a judge, Jean Boyd, bought what became known as the “affluenza” defense — wealthy parents gave him everything but love and values — and sentenced him to 10 years’ probation and taxpayer-funded rehab. For all of Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller’s talk about conservative values and fiscal responsibility, he behaves like a sugar addict in a lollipop store when it comes to lavishing his staffers with taxpayer-funded bonuses. In his first nine months in office, he has doled out a whopping $410,000 in staff bonuses, more than doubling his predecessor’s bonus payout in his first 21/2 years on the job — and exceeding the combined total for the governor, lieutenant governor and comptroller. Yet Miller had the gall, while trying to explain a budgetary crunch that required him to hike fees for farmers and grocery stores, to tell a state Senate committee: “I’m a fiscal hawk.” Does he really think no one’s watching to see if this “hawk” raids the hen house? Vidal Valladares at least deserves credit for being an incurable romantic in an age of watered-down expectations regarding bold demonstrations of love.
But it was an act of sheer recklessness to halt his car on super-busy Interstate 45 outside downtown Houston, get down on one knee in front of a huge line of backed-up cars, and propose marriage to Michelle Wycoff.
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