Utah poisoning case: Police investigate possible motives

  • Kouri Richins was arrested in connection to her husband's death
  • Eric allegedly warned family before he died, saying his wife was to blame
  • Expert: No proof of an affair, but possible financial motive

(NewsNation) — Utah police are investigating multiple possible motives behind the death of Eric Richins, the husband of a children’s book author who has been accused in connection to his death.

According to police, Kouri Richins allegedly threw a party at her new $2 million mansion the day after Eric’s death. Investigators said they are now looking to see if arguments about the mansion could be a motive for his death.

Kouri, who wrote a children’s book about coping with grief after the death of her husband Eric Richins, was arrested for allegedly killing him by spiking his Moscow mule cocktail with fentanyl.

She faces charges of first-degree aggravated murder and multiple counts of second-degree possession of a controlled substance.

Prosecutors allege that Richins called authorities in the middle of the night in March 2022 to report that her husband, Eric Richins, was “cold to the touch.”

The mother of three told officers that she had made her husband a mixed vodka drink to celebrate him selling a home and then went to soothe one of their children to sleep in their bedroom. She later returned and upon finding her husband unresponsive, called 911.

Eric’s family members said they believe Kouri is responsible for his death with court documents saying this wasn’t the first time she had tried to poison him.

According to his family, Eric allegedly warned his family before he died that if anything were to happen to him, his wife was to blame.

New details also revealed that Kouri also allegedly tried to steal her husband’s life insurance policy, making changes to his agreement just two months before his death.

During a Valentine’s Day dinner one month after she adjusted his policy, Eric became sick, telling a friend he thought his wife was trying to kill him.

Investigators said they are not ruling out any potential motives at this time.

The family’s attorney also said Kouri could have been having an affair.

“There are witnesses that will say that she was in fact having a long-time affair. I have not seen proof of that, in terms of text messaging, love letters, other items that I would want to see to corroborate those rumors. But the rumors are out there. And oftentimes, where there is smoke, there is fire,” NewsNation’s Law and Crime contributor Jennifer Coffindaffer said.

While a motive is not required to be shown under law, Coffindaffer explained that the prosecution could use the fact of an alleged affair to show motive.

She also said while there is not any proof of an affair, a possible financial motive could hold up in court.

Kouri is being held without bond and her next court date is Friday.


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