NC Couple on Trial for Aiding Underage Drinking After Teen's Death
A North Carolina couple is on trial for aiding and abetting the consumption of alcohol by a minor after a deadly car crash that killed a teen.
Dr. Charles Joseph Matthews, 59, and Kimberley Hunt Matthews, 52, were charged after Jonathon Taylor, 18, crashed his car into a tree in June 2014.
Police later discovered that Taylor had been drinking at a wedding party thrown by the couple. Taylor's parents took the stand yesterday in Raleigh on the first day of the trial.
Friends of Taylor told police they drank before the party and once there, were openly drinking wine.
Investigators say the Matthews' 19-year-old son was able to buy alcohol and provided it to his friends at the party.
The Matthews claim the teens acted alone and they were unaware of what was going on.
Gretchen Carlson discussed the case with former prosecutor Jonna Spilbor, who explained that the criminal charges are low-level misdemeanors that will probably result in fines and community service if the couple is convicted.
However, Spilbor said that the couple stands to face big penalties in a civil lawsuit that has been filed.
Some parents choose to host underage parties where alcohol is served, but take away the kids' keys, thinking that it will prevent them from driving drunk. Spilbor cautioned against doing this.
"That's a bad idea because that proves that you knew or should have known they're going to be doing something they're not supposed to do. We live in an age now where the only safe way is not to have the party," she said.
Spilbor said so-called "social host laws" are becoming more and more strict around the country.
Watch the segment above.