A judge has once again ordered no jail time for a Texas teenager in a drunken-driving crash that killed four people and maiming two others.
Ethan Couch was given probation last year when he first stood trial on counts of intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault. He was back in court Wednesday after prosecutors requested 20 years in jail on charges related to the two injured people.
The hearing was closed to the public. Defense attorney Reagan Wynn told reporters afterward that Judge Jean Boyd ordered the teen to be sent to a rehabilitation facility paid for by his parents.
The judge didn't identify the facility. However, the family previously offered to pay for a $450,000-a-year center in California.
Couch's blood-alcohol level was three times the legal limit and there were traces of Valium in his system when he lost control of his vehicle, plowing into a group of people helping a woman whose car had stalled.
Seven passengers were in Couch's truck at the time of the accident.
The light sentence has stirred debate, as has a defense expert who said that Couch's wealthy parents coddled him into a sense of irresponsibility. The expert termed the condition "affluenza."
A California lawmaker proposed a bill in January that would prevent legal teams from invoking an "affluenza" defense in the wake of the national outrage that ensued over the defense and light sentence.
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