FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Attorneys for Ethan Couch are trying to get the judge who sent the teenager to jail thrown off his case. The motion argues that Couch could end up filing a civil suit against the court, and Judge Wayne Salvant would now have a financial interest in any decisions he makes.
The motion filed late Monday follows a plea from Couch’s team last month that the 19-year-old has been wrongfully incarcerated. He’s serving 180 days in jail as part of his probation, for each of four separate intoxication manslaughter cases.
A juvenile court judge originally determined Couch should serve 10 years of probation, with no jail time, after the 2013 crash.
Attorneys argued in August that the criminal court Couch’s case was transferred to when he turned 19 didn’t have jurisdiction over what started as a juvenile case, something the state codes as a civil matter.
The new motion for recusal says any determination the court acted out of its jurisdiction, could lead to a civil claim from Couch. The motion argues that gives the judge a financial interest in the outcome of the case, and the court’s impartiality and personal bias could be questioned.
Prosecutors have not filed any response to the new motions. They have not commented on them, following a gag order the judge imposed on all parties involved with the case.
Salvant referred the new motion for his recusal to the presiding judge for the Eighth Adminitrative Judicial Region.