Widow Who Wrote a Book on Grief Now Accused of Husband’s Murder
A Utah widow who published a children’s book about grief a year after losing her husband might be writing her next volume from prison.
Kouri Richins of Utah has been charged with murdering her husband Eric Richins by fentanyl overdose (allegedly committed via his Moscow mule) in March of 2022. Richins, who was arrested in Utah, appeared before the court in June, where she did not enter a plea.
A year after Eric Richins’ death, and just two months before her arrest, the defendant wrote and published a children’s book on grief called “Are You With Me?” which she claims was intended to help their three children cope with the loss of their father.
Claims come to light
In addition to criminal charges, Kouri Richins currently also faces a civil suit at the hands of her late husband’s sister Katie Richins-Benson who is, notably, the representative of his estate.
The civil suit demands in excess of $13 million in damages, alleging, in part, that Richins’ book inappropriately misused Eric Richins’ likeness without permission, as well as including claims that Eric Richins’ murder was committed for financial gain, intended to benefit Kouri Richins’ real estate company, which had over $6 million in debt in addition to overdrawn accounts totaling over $20,000.
Court documents state that Richins’ death was premeditated in a cold and calculating way to profit his wife. According to the complaint, Kouri Richins took out life insurance on her husband in excess of a million dollars, fraudulently applied for personal loans after opening a bank account in his name, appropriated funds from his credit cards and personal accounts, and forged his initials on a Power of Attorney document granting herself agency to act on his behalf.
“Kouri committed the foregoing acts in calculated, systematic fashion and for no reason other than to actualize a horrific endgame—to conceal her ruinous debt, misappropriate assets for the benefit of her personal businesses, orchestrate Eric’s demise, and profit from his passing,” the civil lawsuit states.
Not her first rodeo
The civil suit launched by Richins-Benson on behalf of the estate requests that the court recognize Kouri Richins and her failing real estate company as one and the same for purposes of resolution, as its claims are that the murder was conducted with motive of appropriating financial solvency for the company.
As well as the inappropriate activity on his accounts, Richins-Benson claims that Eric Richins’ valuable personal property seized without permission for purposes of liquidation included almost a quarter of a million dollars in cash, along with numerous vehicles and furnishings for a home theater.
Richins-Benson says that Eric Richins had suspected Kouri Richins of making an attempt on his life once before — with a fentanyl-laced sandwich … on Valentine’s Day, no less.
Incidentally, Richins’ children’s book is no longer listed on Amazon.