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Utah children’s book author accused of killing husband speaks out for 1st time: ‘This means war’


Utah children's book author accused of killing husband speaks out for 1st time: 'This means war'


Kouri Richins, the Utah mom of three and children’s book author accused of fatally poisoning her husband in 2022, is speaking out publicly for the first time since her husband’s death.

Richins, now 35, is charged with attempted murder, aggravated murder and drug possession after she allegedly killed her husband of nine years, Eric Richins, on March 3, 2022 with illicit fentanyl in an attempt to collect millions in life insurance funds.

“I’ve been silent for a year, locked away from my kids, my family, my life, living with the media telling the world who they think I am, what they think I’ve done or how they think I’ve lived,” she said via recorded statements given to “Dateline” through a spokesperson. “And it’s time to start speaking up.”

“You took an innocent mom away from her babies,” she said, according to the show. “And this means war.” 

UTAH CHILDREN’S BOOK AUTHOR SENT DAMNING TEXT TO LOVER BEFORE HUBBY POISON PLOT: DOCS

Kouri Richins in court on May 15, 2024

Kouri Richins, a Utah mother of three, who wrote a children’s book about coping with grief after her husband’s death and was later accused of fatally poisoning him, looks on during a hearing on Wednesday, May 15, 2024, in Park City, Utah. (Rick Bowmer)

Richins’ comments come just days after her defense team filed a request to withdraw from her case on May 17, citing “irreconcilable and nonwaivable situation.”

“This means war.”

— Kouri Richins

“My defense team has been forced to withdraw from my case,” Richins said in another recorded statement. “Represented or not, we all know and should understand there’s only so much I can say. But what I will say is this withdrawal was not my choice. And it was not a personal choice of any counsel on my defense team.”

MOM OF UTAH AUTHOR ACCUSED OF POISONING HUSBAND POSSIBLY ‘INVOLVED IN PLANNING’ HIS DEATH, POLICE SAY

Kouri and Eric Richins smile together

An obituary for Eric Richins describes him as an “avid outdoorsman and dedicated hunter.” He enjoyed helping his family’s cattle ranch and growing his “successful” masonry business. The obituary also describes him as a dedicated family man. (Facebook/Kouri Richins)

In another May 17 filing, Richins’ defense team filed a motion to disqualify state prosecutors, “and specifically Chief Prosecutor Brad Bloodworth, due to his involvement in severe violations that compromise the integrity of adversarial fairness.” Her former lead defense attorney, Skye Lazaro, alleged that prosecutors improperly obtained evidence, including jail calls and a letter considered confidential due to attorney-client privilege, to help build their case against Richins.

Prosecutors allege that Kouri, then 33, killed Eric, 39, as a means to collect millions in life insurance funds and flip a $2 million Wasatch County mansion that was under construction at the time of Eric’s death, an investment that his family said he did not approve of.

UTAH MAN ALLEGEDLY MURDERED BY AUTHOR WIFE TOOK ‘HIGHLY UNUSUAL’ STEPS TO BOOT HER OUT OF WILL

Kouri-Richins

Kouri Richins, a Utah mother of three who authorities say fatally poisoned her husband, Eric Richins, then wrote a children’s book about grieving, looks on during a status hearing on Friday, Sept. 1, 2023, in Park City, Utah. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

The night Eric died, authorities say he, Kouri and her mother, Lisa Darden, were celebrating Kouri’s recent closure of the mansion in question, according to Summit County court documents.

Kouri allegedly made a cocktail for her husband spiked with fentanyl that evening. A medical examiner determined that Eric had more than five times the lethal amount of the illicit opioid in his system when he died. The examiner also found “16,000 ng/ml of Quetiapine,” described as an “atypical antipsychotic medication that is “widely used as a sleep aid,” in Eric Richins’ gastric fluid, new charging documents state.

UTAH MOM KOURI RICHINS GOOGLED ‘LUXURY PRISONS FOR THE RICH’ AFTER ALLEGEDLY KILLING HER HUSBAND: DOCS

Kouri Richins in court on May 15, 2024

Kouri Richins, a Utah mother of three, who wrote a children’s book about coping with grief after her husband’s death and was later accused of fatally poisoning him, looks on during a hearing on Wednesday, May 15, 2024, in Park City, Utah. (Rick Bowmer)

The next day, Kouri allegedly closed a deal on the mansion “alone” after her husband was pronounced dead.

GO HERE FOR MORE TRUE CRIME FROM FOX NEWS DIGITAL

The suspect has also been charged with attempted murder in connection with an earlier Valentine’s Day incident, when she allegedly tried to poison her husband’s sandwich. Eric noticed something was wrong and took his son’s EpiPen, as well as a Benadryl, and survived, according to court documents.

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Kouri has maintained her innocence in her husband’s death.

Following her husband’s death, she wrote a children’s book about grief titled, “Are You With Me?” and made local media appearances promoting the book in which she discussed her husband’s death as her inspiration behind the book.

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