Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

'Wanted' Poster for 'Affluenza' Teen Released

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

'Wanted' Poster for 'Affluenza' Teen Released

Article excerpt

For mowing down four people with his pickup in 2013 while he was drunk, Ethan Couch's name was splashed all over the news. And for skipping town and his probation, the U.S. Marshals now have plastered his face on "Wanted posters released Friday.

The marshals are offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information on the whereabouts of the teen, who will forever be tied to the term "affluenza.

On Thursday, the U.S. Marshals joined the search for Couch, 18, who is wanted on suspicion of violating the terms of his probation by failing to check in with his probation officer. Authorities have said they fear he may have left the country.

Authorities have been searching for Couch since Tuesday, when the juvenile-justice equivalent of an arrest warrant was issued for the teenager.

Couch received 10 years' probation last year in his intoxication manslaughter case after a psychologist testified he suffered from "affluenza because his family's wealth and a dysfunctional relationship with his parents left him without a sense of responsibility.

- the associated press

In addition to local authorities and the U.S. Marshals, a FBI spokeswoman confirmed the agency has also been in contact with the county sheriff's office and is "looking at ways we can assist.

Officials also have been unable to reach his mother, with whom Couch is supposed to be living.

Once Couch is found, there are a "variety of possibilities, said Samantha Jordan, the Tarrant County district attorney's spokeswoman.

"Ultimately, he will go before a juvenile judge to determine next steps, which could include up to his being detained at the Juvenile Detention Center until his 19th birthday in April, she said.

Earlier this week, a spokesman for the Tarrant County sheriff's office said authorities don't plan to go easy on Couch.

"Any mess-ups from now on, he's going to be over with us, said Terry Grisham. …

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