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A Utah real estate agent allegedly, secretly laced her husband’s Moscow Mule with a lethal dose of fentanyl around the time the couple fought over her decision to buy a $2 million mansion near Park City, according to charges filed after her arrest this week and multiple news reports.
Kouri D. Richins then wrote a children’s book with her three sons to help kids grieve the loss of a parent, conducting TV interviews while on a promotional tour just weeks before her arrest.
Kouri Richins, 34, was charged on Monday with one count of aggravated murder and three counts of possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute, according to charging documents. Her first court appearance is scheduled for May 19.
Multiple previous real estate listings show Kouri Richins most recently affiliated with Conrad Cruz Real Estate Services, based in Salt Lake County. The firm didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on Friday.
Kouri Richins had at least one listing that was canceled on Thursday, three days after she was charged. It is now listed by another brokerage, and her license is marked as inactive.
On or about March 3, 2022, she initially told investigators she made her husband, Eric Richins, a Moscow Mule while the two celebrated her closing on a new home, according to an arrest warrant. She then slept in another room to comfort one of her sons and returned around 3 a.m. to find her husband cold to the touch, she said.
Medical examiners determined Eric Richins received a dose of fentanyl that was five times the lethal limit. He was pronounced dead on March 4, 2022, at age 39.
Shortly before his death, Kouri and Eric Richins were arguing over Kouri’s plan to buy a $2 million house in the wealthy mountain town of Midway, just south of Park City, and then flip the home for a profit, The Salt Lake Tribune reported, citing court documents.
Eric Richins was planning to tell his wife he wouldn’t sign the closing documents to buy the house, saying he believed the couple would lose money on the deal, the Tribune reported.
The warrant says Kouri Richins bought pills from a nearby drug dealer on multiple occasions, and that Eric Richins had been suspicious that he was being poisoned on multiple occasions before his death.
Eric Richins told his family about his suspicions and left written instructions on what to do if he died, the Daily Mail first reported.
Shortly after his death, Kouri Richins wrote the children’s book about grief, saying in a local TV interview that her husband’s death “took us all by shock.”
The book was described as “a heartwarming and reassuring book that gently guides children through the difficult experience of losing a loved one,” according to a description on Reader’s Alley.
“Wherever you go, whoever you become, their love remains with you,” the tagline of the book reads.
The book Are You With Me? has now been removed from most online bookstores.
Richins obtained a real estate license in Utah in 2018, according to the state’s Department of Commerce. It has been marked inactive, it isn’t affiliated with her previous brokerage and it is set to expire next year.