Tonya Couch mugshot

Tonya Couch: ‘Affluenza’ Teen’s Mom Returns To Texas, $1 Million Bond Set

Tonya Couch, the mother of “affluenza teen” Ethan Couch, was returned to Fort Worth, Texas, on Thursday, where she faces charges of helping her son escape the country while he was still on probation.

New York Daily News reports that Couch, 48, who waived extradition earlier this week, was taken to the Lon Evans Corrections Center, with her hands and ankles shackled with handcuffs. She arrived at the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport around 1:30 p.m. (2:30 p.m. ET) earlier today, with U.S. marshals closely following behind her. Couch didn’t show much expression as she was led into jail wearing a navy blue windbreaker, and avoided looking at the numerous cameras pointed at her.

Tonya Couch, second from right, arrives at the Tarrant County Jail in Fort Worth, Texas. ( Photo by Paul Moseley/Star-Telegram via AP, Pool)
Tonya Couch, second from right, arrives at the Tarrant County Jail in Fort Worth, Texas. ( Photo by Paul Moseley/Star-Telegram via AP, Pool)

Tarrant County Sheriff Dee Anderson, who spoke at a news conference on Thursday afternoon, revealed that Couch was quiet and subdued as she made her way from the airport to the jail. The sheriff, who’s been involved with the case since Ethan Case was given probation in 2013, spoke briefly to Tonya Couch.

“She was very quiet, very reserved, very respectful and appreciative.”

Star-Telegram reports that Couch’s attorneys are trying to appeal her $1 million bond amount, stating that under the Texas Constitution and the Eighth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the amount set for her release is too high. Couch is slated to appear in front of District Judge Wayne Salvant on Monday afternoon for a bail hearing.

Numerous people are already chiming in that since Tonya Couch and her son had the funds to escape to Mexico for weeks, the bail amount shouldn’t be questioned, especially since she’ll more than likely be considered a flight risk.

Tonya Couch, second from right, avoided eye contact with onlookers and cameras as she made her way into the Tarrant County Jail. ( Photo by Paul Moseley/Star-Telegram via AP, Pool)
Tonya Couch, second from right, avoided eye contact with onlookers and cameras as she made her way into the Tarrant County Jail. ( Photo by Paul Moseley/Star-Telegram via AP, Pool)

Meanwhile, it’s still unclear when the “affluenza teen” himself will return to the U.S. The 18-year-old remains in a detention center in Mexico after filing a writ of amparo. It could take weeks or even months before the teen returns to Texas, something that Anderson finds ridiculous, although he admits he’s not familiar with Mexico laws and its judicial system.

“If justice had been served the first time, we wouldn’t have had this issue. Ethan Couch should have been locked up.”

Ethan Couch made headlines in 2013 after being given what many people consider an extremely light sentence for killing four people and injuring numerous others during a drunk driving accident. On June 15, 2013, The teen, a 16-year-old at the time, plowed his father’s Ford F150 truck into innocent bystanders who were stranded off of Burleson-Retta Road in the Fort Worth area.

Ethan Couch dyed his hair black to avoid detection by authorities. ( Photo by Mexico's Jalisco state prosecutor's office via AP, File)
Ethan Couch dyed his hair black to avoid detection by authorities. ( Photo by Mexico’s Jalisco state prosecutor’s office via AP, File)

Breanna Mitchell, 24; Hollie Boyles, 52; Shelby Boyles, 21; and Brian Jennings, 41 were all killed during the incident. An additional nine people were injured.

Ethan Couch received 10 years of probation and inpatient counseling treatment for his crime. Yet, even though he avoided jail time, the 18-year-old violated his probation by allegedly playing beer pong with friends, which surfaced on social media via a video last month. Instead of showing up to his required probation meeting, Ethan Couch and his mother fled to Mexico to avoid the teen facing the consequences of violating the rules set forth in his probation.

Both mom and son were captured in Mexico last month, in the resort town of Puerto Vallarta. Officials indicate that Ethan Couch ordered pizzas and spent his time visiting a local strip club. He dyed his hair color from blonde to black to avoid capture.

According to Tarrant County court records, Tonya Couch is expected to appear for her first arraignment on Friday morning to face charges of hindering his apprehension, a third-degree felony.

[Photo Courtesy of the Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office]

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