Being rich might not buy you happiness, but it can get you out of prison pretty damn fast, even if you kill four people. In the holy-shit-what's-gonna-kill-us-today fast-paced world that we live in, it's easy to forget about a Grey Poupon stain like Ethan Couch. Here's his thing, point by point:
Back in 2013, the then 16-year old stole booze from a Walmart (classy!) and proceeded to drink. When he was later captured by the police, his BAC was three times the legal limit. Couch also had Valium in his system that day, making for a pretty powerful cocktail. Intoxicated, Couch slammed into a car with his pickup truck, at top speed. All four people in the car were killed.
Couch's high-falootin' rich dude lawyer managed to get him off with 10 years of probation. The lawyer cited the fact that the lad's family was so loaded that he'd grown up rich enough to be shielded from having to learn about right and wrong.
Apparently, he was also too rich to be able to stand the horrors of probation in all the luxury that money can afford. He and his mother, Tonya, took off to Mexico in an attempt to keep him from having to serve the rest of his "sentence."
The Feds came to Mexico, gathered up the pair, and brought them back to the United States. Fun Fact: Tonya Couch didn't go to jail for helping her son flee his probation. Money's AMAZING!
Dylan was finally sentenced to jail. Read the rest
I read a lot. It's part of my job as a writer. Sadly, most of what I read these days is kind of terrible. We do awful things to one another. We've been doing it for a long time. Here's something terrible that I learned today.
In 1972, Herman Wallace was in the Louisiana State Penitentiary doing a stretch for armed robbery. While he was inside, one of the prison's guards was murdered. Wallace and two other black men--Robert King and Albert Woodfox--were convicted for the murder.
There was just one problem: they weren't guilty.
To say that Wallace, King and Woodfox, known members of the militant Black Panther Party, were unpopular with the penitentiary's staff was an understatement. Back then the trio insisted that the crime was being hung on them because of the color of their skin and their political beliefs. Their declaration of innocence wasn't enough to save them from being punished for the guard's murder. The trio was declared guilty. Wallace spent the next 41 years of his life in solitary confinement.
In 2013, a United States Federal Court Judge overturned Wallace's sentence, stating in no uncertain terms that Wallace's trial had been "unconstitutional" and ordered his immediate release. The Department of Corrections complied with the order.
A few days later, Wallace died of liver cancer. The only moments of freedom he had known in over four decades were also his last. King and Woodfox were a little more lucky--both managed to stay alive for more than a few days after leaving prison. Read the rest