Families Agree to Settlement in "Affluenza" Teen Case

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Ethan Couch (inset left with graphic) faces five civil lawsuits for a June 2013 crash that killed four people and injured two others.

    The families of three victims who died in a drunk driving crash last year that gained national attention over the teenage driver's "affluenza" defense have settled multiple lawsuits.

    Hollie and Shelby Boyles' family, as well as the family of Breanna Mitchell, settled their civil lawsuits against Ethan Couch's parents for an undisclosed amount of money.

    Couch, who was 16 years old at the time of the wreck, was sentenced in December to 10 years probation on four counts of intoxication manslaughter.

    In June 2013, an intoxicated Couch lost control of a pick-up truck he was driving and plowed into a group of people helping a stranded driver along Burleson-Retta Road in Tarrant County.

    The case sparked outrage after the defense argued Couch suffered from a condition called "affluenza" after growing up in a wealthy family.

    Defense attorneys claimed the teenager had no sense of responsibility due to lack of parenting, which affected his judgment.

    The crash killed 43-year-old Burleson youth minister Brian Jennings, Breanna Mitchell, 24, Shelby Boyles, 21, and her 52-year-old mother, Hollie Boyles. Nine others were also injured.

    Couch's blood alcohol content was three times the legal limit at .24, according to the Tarrant County Sheriff's Department. It is illegal for anyone under 21 years of age to drive with any amount of alcohol in their system. There were also traces of Valium in his system.

    A judge in early February ordered Couch to go to a rehabilitation facility paid for by his parents, for an undetermined amount of time. He was spared further jail time.

    Couch still faces charges of intoxication assault related to other victims' cases.