The Utah woman who wrote a child’s book about the death of her husband, who she has since been charged with poisoning, sobbed in court Monday as she was confronted with evidence against her, including the scathing words of grieving relatives.
“I never knew evil like this existed,” Amy Richins told a Utah court as she berated her ex-sister-in-law, Kouri Richins, Law & Crime reported.
The 33-year-old mother of three stands charged with first-degree aggravated murder and possession of a controlled substance for allegedly serving her husband, Eric, a Moscow Mule laced with five-times the lethal dose of fentanyl.
Wearing a simple white, button-down shirt, black pants and her brown hair tied back, Richins was flanked by her attorneys in Summit County court for a Monday detention hearing, where she was ordered held in jail without bail.
Richins cried in court Monday as prosecutors read a text message she allegedly sent to her “best friend”.
“I pumped so damn hard, so hard, screaming at him to come back to life,” the text message allegedly stated.
Richins could be seen wiping her face with a tissue as it was read out.
She went on to write a children’s book about his March 2022 death, titled, “Are You With Me?”
But prosecutors said evidence actually showed EMS responders — not Kouri —were likely the first to perform CPR on Eric.
“The Defendant informed dispatch and police she performed CPR on Eric Richins while awaiting EMS response. Foam coming from Eric Richins’ mouth, however, indicates that EMS personnel were in fact the first to perform CPR on him,” prosecutors claim, according to Law & Crime network.
Kouri Richins, who worked as a real estate agent, said she and her husband were celebrating on the night of March 3, 2022, because she had recently sold a house. She made him a Moscow Mule vodka drink and brought it to him in their bedroom.
She “stated she went to bed and shortly after went to sleep with one of the children in the child’s bedroom because that the child was having a night terror,” court records show.
Richins told police she awoke around 3 a.m. and returned to her and her husband’s bedroom.
“She felt Eric and he was cold to the touch,” previous records state.
But evidence showed Kouri Richins had a second cell phone and had made several suspicious Internet searches, including “luxury prisons for the rich in America,” if the cause of death listed on a death certificate could be changed and whether police could force a person to take a polygraph test, according to reports.
She also allegedly clicked on articles with titles, “Delay in Claim Payment for Death Certificate with Pending Cause of Death,” and “Signs of Being Under Federal Investigation.”
Amy Richins, Eric’s sister, confronted her former sister-in-law about the way her brother died —“under horrendous circumstances” — and “how little” he meant to her, KUTV2 reported.
In the moments before his death, he faced “betrayal and terror,” Amy said in court.
“I am haunted by the horror of it.”
She recalled how Richins wouldn’t help with funeral costs but allegedly bought a $2 million house within two days of Eric’s death. She also claimed Richins had previously assaulted her and tried to cut Eric’s family out of his children’s lives.
Amy told the court she feared for her family’s safety and for the wellbeing of Eric’s sons.
“Our family has already suffered enough,” she said.
Investigators claimed Richins had bought fentanyl from a woman named “CL,” who cleaned the Richins’ personal and business properties.
But defense attorneys fired back, arguing prosecutors provided “zero corroborating evidence” showing CL bought fentanyl for Richins, and further pointed to a lack of any evidence of fentanyl inside Richins’ home, KUTV2 reported.
“Being bad with money does not make you a murderer,” defense attorney Skye Lazaro reportedly told the court. Being bad at managing your accounts makes you bad at math, but it doesn’t make you a murderer.”