Affluenza as a DWI Defense Strategy?

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Affluenza As DWI Defense | New Orleans, LA Attorney | Harmon, Smith & Vourvoulias, LLC“Affluenza” is a term, popularized in the late 1990s by the granddaughter of a past General Motors president, used to describe a sense of entitlement by children from wealthy families. Because of this, they are supposedly irresponsible, make excuses for poor behavior, and sometimes dabble in drugs and alcohol.

While many would view this simply as “spoiled brat syndrome,” a psychologist recently testified in a DWI hearing that a 16-year-old North Texas teenager should not get the maximum sentence because the accident resulted from affluenza.

Sixteen-year-old Ethan Crouch killed four pedestrians while driving under the influence of alcohol. The Texas judge’s decision to give Crouch 10 years of probation for the manslaughter conviction has sparked outrage from relatives of the victims, leading to questions about “affluenza” as a defense strategy.

Police say Crouch and his friends were seen on video stealing beer from a store. He had seven passengers in his pickup truck, was speeding, and had a BAC level three times over the legal limit.

The judge decided that programs available in the Texas juvenile system may not provide the necessary therapy, so it was agreed that the juvenile would be sent to a Newport Beach, California rehabilitation center.

This case has grabbed media attention, with many accusing the judge of setting a double-standard when sentencing for a DWI conviction.

If you have questions about this case or have been charged with a DWI in Louisiana, contact an experienced DWI attorney today.

This article’s photo comes courtesy of Flickr contributor, Tax Credits

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Categorized as Blog, DUI, DWI

By George Vourvoulias

George is a founding member and managing member of Harmon, Smith & Vourvoulias L.L.C., a New Orleans law firm. George concentrates his practice in maritime personal injury, construction litigation, personal injury, workers' compensation, medical malpractice, and DUI defense. George Vourvoulias's Google+ Profile