Justice

The Affluenza Teen's Escape Story Will Make You Cringe

The Tarrant County, Texas teenager who famously avoided jail time after killing four people in a drunk driving accident two years ago has failed to check in with his probation officer and is now missing.

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In 2013, Ethan Couch killed four people but received a 10-year probation after Couch's defense team hired a psychologist to testify that Couch suffered from affluenza — a term used to describe psychological problems that can afflict children of wealthy families — despite the fact that Couch's blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit on the day of the accident, according to the New York Times and ABC. In the case Couch's defense presented Couch as a victim who was result of an overindulgent lifestyle and that "irresponsible parenting" and the lifestyle associated with his "affluent upbringing strongly enabled the accident."

It's unclear who invented the term but it is a condition that cites capitalism and consumerism as the perfect combination for mental illness, according to Psychology Today.

Initially, the outcome stunned prosecutors and the families of the victims who felt that Couch's punishment was unjust, CNN reported.

But recently, authorities are at a lost as to the whereabouts of Couch and have since issued a warrant.

Couch was currently living with his mother but police have not been able to contact Couch or his mother.

"We have recently learned that, for the last several days, the juvenile probation officer has been unable to make contact with Ethan or his mother with whom he has been residing," Couch's lawyers, Reagan Wynn and Scott Brown said in an email to ABC News. "It is our understanding that the court has issued a directive to apprehend, to have Ethan detained because he is out of contact with his probation officer."

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Before this police were already in the process of investigating the 18-year-old after a video surfaced on social media on Dec. 2 that appeared to show Couch at a party with friends playing beer pong.

According to the terms of his probation, Couch is permitted from driving, drinking or using drugs. Any violation of these terms could land Couch in jail for 10 years, ABC reports.

Authorities believe the video's release triggered Couch to leave town, CBS Dallas-Fort Worth reports, and has already reignited the conversation about whether or not Couch got off too easy.

Now, the 18-year-old is among Tarrant County's top fugitives.

“I hate to say I told you so, but I told you so,” Sheriff Dee Anderson told the CBS Dallas-Fort Worth. “I knew he was going to end up in more trouble.”

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