Ethan Couch — the “affluenza teen” who killed four people while driving drunk two years ago and recently fled to Mexico with his mother — has been granted a temporary stay against his extradition to the U.S. His mother was deported to Los Angeles Wednesday evening.
Couch and his mother were detained in Mexico on Monday. They originally had been scheduled to return to the U.S. on Wednesday, where Ethan Couch would face a hearing before a juvenile court judge.
The U.S. Marshals Service says a Mexican judge granted an injunction blocking Couch’s immediate deportation, the Associated Press reports, but his mother, Tonya Couch, was deported.
She is expected to face charges of hindering an apprehension.
The news service adds:
“Richard Hunter, chief deputy U.S. marshal for the southern district of Texas, said Wednesday in Houston that the Mexican court’s three-day injunction will very likely take at least two weeks to resolve.”
“We’re patient people,” Tarrant County Sheriff Dee Anderson says, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “We’ll be waiting.”
Ethan Couch became infamous in 2013, when he was 16 years old and on trial over the fatal car crash. He was sentenced to 10 years’ probation and no jail time — after his family’s lawyers argued that Couch’s wealthy, privileged upbringing had left him with “affluenza” and made him incapable of understanding the consequences of his actions. He was ordered to enter a pricey rehabilitation center, on his parents’ dime.
Earlier this month, Couch, now 18, missed a meeting with his probation officer. Video online also appeared to show him at a party where people were drinking alcohol. Consuming alcohol would violate his probation.
After a manhunt, Couch and his mother were located in Mexico. They were tracked down after one of their phones was used to order pizza in the resort city of Puerto Vallarta, the AP reports.
As we reported Tuesday, the Tarrant County sheriff said the flight to Mexico seemed to have been planned — and that the mother and son even appeared to have had a “going-away party.”