By: Jeff Tavss
SUMMIT COUNTY, Utah (Scripps News Salt Lake City) — A Summit County woman who wrote a book about helping children deal with the grief of losing a loved one was charged Monday in the death of her husband.
Kouri Richins, 33, was charged with aggravated murder, a first-degree felony, along with three charges of possession with intent to distribute.
Richins is the author of the book “Are You with Me?,” which, according to the description on Amazon, “follows the story of a child who has lost their father, but who is reminded that his presence still exists all around them, just like an angel watching over them.”
The book was released on March 7, 2023, nearly a year after Richins’ husband, Eric, died. Court documents show Eric Richins died on March 4, 2022, after deputies arrived at the family home and found him at the foot of his bed.
Kouri told police that she had made her husband an alcoholic beverage and brought it to him in their bedroom. Later that night, she said she felt Eric and claimed he was “cold to the touch.”
An autopsy showed Eric had died from an overdose of fentanyl, with the medical examiner claiming the level of the drug in his system was approximately five times the lethal dosage.
During an investigation into Eric’s death, an acquaintance of Kouri’s told police that she had asked if they could get her “some prescription pain medication for an investor who had a back injury.” After getting Kouri hydrocodone pills, the acquaintance said she was asked to get something stronger, specifically “some of the Michael Jackson stuff.” The acquaintance was able to deliver Kouri 15-30 fentanyl pills.
Three days later, the documents show that Eric and Kouri had dinner at their home and that he became “very ill” and believed he had been poisoned. “Eric told a friend that he thought his wife was trying to poison him,” the documents read.
Kouri asked the acquaintance for another batch of fentanyl pills about two weeks later. Six days after receiving the new pills, Eric was found dead of a fentanyl overdose.
An obituary said that Eric and Kouri had been married for nine years at the time of his death and that the couple had three children.
“Eric did absolutely everything in his power to provide his family with every possible opportunity to learn, grow, and have fun,” the obituary reads.
In an eerie post to Facebook on May 4, Kouri wrote, “Life is just so damn hard without you here! The cards I have been dealt seems like a game that cant be played. #pleasecomehome Eric Richins.”
This story was originally published on May 8, 2023, by KSTU in Salt Lake City, an E.W. Scripps Company.