CATCHING AFFLUENZA

Ken Berwitz


Remember ethan couch? 

As a 16 year old, he got good and drunk, hopped into a pickup and killed four people with it – then was sentenced to no jail time, just 10 years of probation by an idiot posing as a judge (her name is jean hudson boyd) on the astoundingly sick grounds that he suffered from “affluenza” – i.e. he came from a rich family and was so privileged that he had no idea of what right and wrong was.

One of the conditions of serving probation instead of jail time was that he not drink – which couch apparently ignored, based on the fact that he was videoed at a drunken “party” laughing along with the moronic behavior of his pals.  

The video did not specifically show him drinking, but – this is my speculation – the likelihood that one of his friends would have ratted him out to authorities was enough to have him, and his mother, flee the country.

Well, they have been found.  In Mexico.  And the Mexican authorities are holding them, presumably to send them back to the USA.

And, incredibly, because he was originally sentenced as a “juvenile” the system will allow only minimal punishment for this latest outrage.

Let me show you why, via these excerpts from article at CNN.com:

As of now, the mostsevere punishment Couch could face is 120 days in adult jail, Tarrant CountyDistrict Attorney Sharen Wilson said at a press conference Tuesday.

The district attorney explained the dilemma she faces:

. Ethan Couch was sentenced as a juvenile and violated his probation asordered by the juvenile court system.

. Under Texas law, Couch, now 18, would be punished for his violation inthe juvenile system.

. The maximum sentence that a juvenile judge can dish out for aviolation of his juvenile probation is imprisonment in a juvenile facilityuntil Couch turns 19, which is April 11, 2016.

. The DA wants to transfer Couch\’s sentence to adult court. But sincethis violation happened in the juvenile system, Couch effectively would startwith a clean slate in the adult probation system. That is, the adult courtjudge could not punish Couch for violations he committed as a juvenile.

. At the time a judge reassesses Couch\’s probation in the adult system,he has the power to put Couch in adult jail for a maximum of 120 days.

The 120 days in jail won\’t please those who think Couch deserves worse,but as the facts stand now, it is what the law allows.

If Couch ends up on adult probation and violates it as an adult, hecould face up to 40 years in jail, Wilson said. Couch also could find himselfbehind bars for longer if he is found to have committed any new crimes and ischarged and convicted as an adult for those crimes.

In other words, for ethan couch – useless, hopeless pile of sewage that he is – boyd\’s “affluenza” ruling is the gift that keeps on giving.

If I had my way, he would be tossed in jail, with the key somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico.  And the idiot judge, jean hudson boyd, would be permanently disbarred.  But neither of those things is going to happen.

What I hope for, therefore, is that, no matter what jail time couch gets now, the adult probation is in force.  Then, when he violates it – as experience tells us is a near-100% probability – put him in jail for as many years as is allowed.

As for the mother, I hope she gets the maximum sentence on every law she violated by aiding and abetting his flight from the country.

Let me end with a couple of questions:  how many prison inmates do you figure there are, doing years and years of time for far lesser offenses than the needless killing of four innocent people, who – based on judge boyd\’s ruling – are only there because they didn\’t grow up rich like ethan couch did?  What do you figure their opinion is of an “affluenza” defense?  And do you blame them for having that opinion?

I know I don\’t.

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