A Curious Case of “Affluenza”

Staff Writer: John Mack

In 2013, the case of Ethan Couch, the “Affluenza Teen”, went viral because of his “Affluenza” or being too spoiled to know right from wrong as he got away with four murders. Later in 2015, a video surfaced of Couch violating parole and then he fled to Mexico only to get caught.

In 2013, Couch was involved in a DUI crash that killed four people in Texas where his blood alcohol content was believed to be three times the legal limit. But what cause the most controversy was his “Affluenza” plea, which got him only 10 years of probation and no prison time. This sparked outrage with people claiming “Affluenza” is not real and that he was “too spoiled for prison”. Woodstock teacher Mrs. Kristin Bintliff says, “Affluenza is not a real case for defense.”

While Couch was on probation in 2015, a video emerged of him supposedly drinking alcohol, which was a violation of his probation. Later he fled the U.S. with his mother to Mexico were they were caught by Mexican police which again sparked controversy because Couch’s mother had helped him escape and a clear case that nothing has changed since the infamous DUI case in 2013.

Because of Couch’s age he might only serve time in a juvenile detention center while his mother has a possibility of 10 years in prison. This again left people outraged that Couch should be put in a real jail for fleeing justice and for the DUI case. However, sympathy is now low of Couch in Texas and with him dropping deportation appeal in Mexico he is expected to come back to the U.S. where he will face justice. Bintliff says that Couch going to jail “depends on the case the prosecutors make and if the evidence is good.”


Tarrant County Courthouse, Texas this is where Couch will face a judge when he is deported.

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