Ethan Couch, known widely as “Affluenza Teen,” will be released from prison after serving nearly a two year sentence. Many may remember his 2013 case, when the then 16-year-old was convicted of killing four people in a drunk-driving accident in Burleson, Texas.
During his trial, Couch made headlines as his defense team argued he suffered from “affluenza” or irresponsibility due to his family’s wealth.
The now 20-year old served time in Tarrant County Jail after he violated the terms of his 10-year probation. He’s expected to be released from prison April 2. The defense worked (what in the white nonsense) as Couch was given no jail time and instead probation in addition to time in a rehabilitation center.
However, in 2016 he decided to violate his probation by fleeing with his mother to Mexico. Once captured, Couch was sentenced to 720 days (1 year, 9 months) in prison. His mother, Tonya Couch, is free on bond as she awaits trial on charges of hindering apprehension of a felon and money laundering, according to the New York Post.
If Ethan never tried to flee to Mexico, his probation would have ended on his 19th birthday as he would have phased out of the juvenile system. In 2016, Juvenile Judge Timothy Menikos tried him as an adult and extended his probation to February 2024.
Couch has gained support throughout his prison sentence. Speaking to reporters Tuesday (Mar. 20), Tim Williams says Couch has transformed. Williams’ friend Brian Jennings was one of the four people killed in the car crash. “I think that Ethan is now a young man that has the potential to bring life, to be quote – the good citizen, the good friend, a good man and maybe someday a good father,” said Williams.
His position as a visiting chaplain at the Tarrant County Correction Center allowed him to visit Couch weekly since April 2016. Over this time, Williams says he’s seen changes in Couch that would’ve made his friend proud.
“My opinion today is that Ethan is on a path that Brian would be proud of,” Williams said. “I don’t know how Ethan is going to be when he gets out, my hopes, my prayers are he is really transformed, as I think he is.”