Mothers Against Drunk Driving’s goal was to get 30,000 signatures by January 19 on a petition it released Monday calling for a transfer of "affluenza" teen Ethan Couch’s case to adult court. It received that many in one day.
MADD initially had its sights on a goal of 30,000 signatures by January 19, before Couch’s transfer hearing, according to a statement from the organization. Should his case be bumped from juvenile court to adult court, it "gives the criminal justice system the opportunity to hold him accountable by ensuring his probation extends beyond his 19th birthday in April 2016."
In the preface to its petition, MADD took the stance that "Couch is no child. His actions are not that of a child."
The public backlash to Couch’s case began in 2013 when he was sentenced to 10 years’ probation for killing four people in a drunk driving accident. During his case, the defense played up his age and a psychologist said he had "affluenza," or "the product of wealthy, privileged parents who never set limits."
However, after a video recently emerged that showed Couch at a party drinking alcohol – a violation of his probation – he and his mother fled to Mexico. They were arrested in Puerto Vallarta late last month.