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TARRANT COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – Fred Couch, the father of so-called ‘affluenza’ teen, Ethan Couch has a jury of his own to face this week.
Accused of falsely claiming that he’s a police officer, Fred Couch’s personal legal woes started in 2014 when he allegedly told a North Richland Hills police officer he was a reserve officer in the town of Lakeside.
His son Ethan was behind the wheel of a pickup that into and killed four people on Father’s Day weekend 2013. Couch admitted to being the driver, and court records showed his blood alcohol level was .24 at the time of the crash, three times the legal limit for an adult. Prosecutors also presented evidence that Couch and some friends stole beer from a Burleson Walmart on June 15, the night of the crash. After consuming the alcohol, Couch and seven others jumped back into his pickup to go to another store. Two teens riding in Couch’s pickup were thrown from the truck and were severely injured.
Ethan Couch’s attorneys argued his parents were responsible for the teen’s actions that night due to the way he was raised. Defense attorneys put a psychologist on the stand who testified the 16-year-old was a product of wealth and got whatever he wanted. The psychologist also testified the teen was allowed to drink at a very young age and began driving at 13 years old. Defense attorneys argued Couch needed treatment, not jail and suggested a facility that costs almost half a million dollars a year.
Fred Couch’s attorneys tried to receive a change of venue for his case, citing media coverage. But their request was denied.
A jury will start hearing Fred Couch’s case tomorrow, he declined any comment to CBS11 News.
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