The family of a man who was killed by a teen who was charged with drunk driving has filed suit against his parents and their company. Brian Paul Jennings, a youth pastor, and three other people were killed in an accident on June. Jennings had been assisting a disabled driver and a group of people who were trying to help her.
Investigators said Ethan Couch, 16, had a blood alcohol level of 0.24; three times the legal limit when the pickup truck he was driving collided with the stalled vehicle. Investigators estimate that he had been travelling at a speed between 68 and 70 miles per hour prior to the crash.
Prosecutors in the case say that they are seeking up to 20 years in prison for Crouch. The surviving relatives of Brian Paul Jennings say that Couch’s parents were negligent and ultimately culpable in the accident because the teen was driving drunk in a pickup that was owned by his parent’s company.
By law, the teen was required to have someone 21-years-old riding in the front passenger seat.
Couch is charged with four counts of intoxication manslaughter.
The troubles of this young man and his family are only beginning. Not only could he potentially be spending the next 20 years of his life in prison, his parents could likely lose almost everything that they have ever worked for as a result of a night of underage drinking.
In Texas, there is a zero-tolerance policy for the crime underage drinking. Because a teenager behind the wheel of a motor vehicle has far less experience than an older driver and because teen drivers are less able to handle the debilitating effects of heavy drinking, often they will misjudge their ability to drive when intoxicated. Add to this the evidence that clearly shows that teen drivers are far more inclined to drive over the speed limit than older, more experienced drivers are Teens, underage drinking and speed are a dangerous mix and can sometimes be a deadly combination.
If you have experienced a loss or damage or have been injured due to a drunk driver, give our offices a call. Our attorneys have years of experience in DUI cases and in recovering restitution for damages for our clients You deserve not only compensation for your injuries, but also to see that justice is served. If the case involves a drunk driver, or if your teen has been involved in a serious accident, our lawyers have extensive experience in the Texas courts and can help you sort through the overwhelming amounts of insurance and legal hurdles. We will take the time and discuss the details of your specific case and we will help you decide your best course of action. We are here to help. Your initial consultation is confidential, free and without obligation to you.