International Business Times Quotes Professor Underwood in Controversial 'Affluenza' Case

December 16, 2013


A controversial criminal court case out of Tarrant County is garnering national and international attention, and the International Business Times has interviewed Baylor Law Professor James Underwood about civil suits tied to the case.

A judge in Tarrant County sentenced 16-year-old Ethan Couch to 10 years probation after the teen admitted to driving under the influence of alcohol and killing four people and injuring at least nine others in June. The truck Couch was driving was registered to his father's company.

Couch's defense argued that the teen was a victim of "affluenza," as his parents were so wealthy they had raised the boy to think money would shield him from the consequences of his actions.

As the debate over the sentence rages on, several of the victims or their families have filed multimillion-dollar lawsuits against Couch's parents.

Discussing the civil suits, Professor Underwood told the International Business Times that "Both dad and the company face [legal] exposure here, not for bad parenting but for what would be called negligent entrustment."

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