Kamas woman charged with killing her husband files civil suit against his estate

Jun 15, 2023, 6:30 PM | Updated: 8:46 pm

Kouri Richins, center, talks with her lawyers during a bail hearing in Park City on Monday. She is ...

Kouri Richins, center, talks with her lawyers during a bail hearing in Park City on Monday. She is now suing the estate of her husband, whom she is charged with killing, saying she is entitled to equity on the house they purchased together. (Mark Wetzel, KSL-TV)

(Mark Wetzel, KSL-TV)

KAMAS, Utah — A Kamas woman claims the prenuptial agreement she signed with her husband — whom she is accused of killing — is still valid and she should receive at least half of the equity from the nearly $2 million home they lived in together.

Kouri Darden Richins, 33, has filed a civil lawsuit against the estate of her deceased husband, 39-year-old Eric Richins.

She is in the Summit County Jail charged with aggravated murder and accused of surreptitiously giving Eric Richins a fatal dose of fentanyl. In her criminal proceedings, information about Kouri Richins’ debt and financial disagreements with her husband have been revealed.

In September 2020, Eric Richins discovered his wife obtained and spent $250,000 on a home equity line of credit for the Kamas home that Eric Richins owned before their marriage, according to the amended charges. She had also withdrawn more than $100,000 from his bank accounts and spent more than $30,000 on his credit cards, investigators said.

Kouri Richins had also “been appropriating distributions made from Eric Richins’ business for the purpose of making federal and state quarterly tax payments and not paying the taxes. The stolen tax payments totaled at least $134,346,” the charges allege. Eric Richins confronted his wife about this, and she agreed to repay him, police said.

Eric Richins consulted a divorce lawyer and an estate planning lawyer in October 2020, without Kouri Richins’ knowledge, and changed his will to form the “Eric Richins Living Trust,” investigators say in the amended charging documents. This placed his estate under the control of his sister for the benefit of his three children, and it transferred his partnership interest in his business to the trust.

The civil lawsuit filed earlier this month is in regard to the Richins home that the couple purchased in 2013 in Francis, Summit County, for $400,000.

“Although Eric and Kouri jointly purchased the family home, jointly paid the mortgage, jointly paid the utilities, and otherwise agreed and acted in all respects as if the family home was a joint marital asset, legal title to the family home has remained solely in Eric’s name since its acquisition, with equitable title being held jointly by Kouri and Eric, and subsequently Eric’s trust,” the lawsuit states.

Kamas woman paid for all expenses on home since his passing

Kouri Richins says she has paid for nearly all expenses for the home on her own since her husband died, and that the home now has a value of about $1.9 million.

“Kouri is entitled to half of all equity in the family home,” the lawsuit contends. “Alternatively, if she is not entitled to half of all the equity, she is at least entitled to half of the increase in equity value that occurred after her marriage to Eric.”

According to Kouri Richins, the house is a joint marital asset and the prenup she signed prior to their marriage remains in effect.

The lawsuit says Eric Richins’ estate believes it has sole ownership over the home, while Kouri Richins contends she and the estate own the home as “tenants in common.”

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Crime, Police + Courts

AG sean reyes...

Bridger Beal-Cvetko,

Sean Reyes ‘deeply saddened’ by Tim Ballard allegations, won’t endorse in Senate race

Reyes is a longtime friend of Ballard and accompanied the anti-sex trafficking activist on a rescue mission in Colombia in 2014.

2 hours ago

the crash in eagle mountain...

Kate Davis

Suspect in Eagle Mountain road-rage crash that killed two due in court

Peterson Drew Matheson, the suspect in an Eagle Mountain road-rage accident will be court Friday morning. Two were killed in the accident.

3 hours ago

SALT LAKE CITY — An attorney representing a group of former employees and contractors of Operatio...

Lindsay Aerts, Larry D. Curtis

‘These allegations are true,’ say former OUR employees about Tim Ballard

An attorney representing a group wanting to make a public statement about Operation Underground Railroad read a statement Thursday morning.

23 hours ago

A Salt Lake City Police patrol car blocks the entrance to a credit union located at 769 East South ...

Mark Jones

Suspect in alleged credit union robbery arrested by SLCPD

Salt Lake City police announced Wednesday the arrest of a 41-year-old man in connection to a robbery of a credit union on Monday.

2 days ago

West Valley City police say a suspect in connection to a fatal shooting on Sept. 15 is in custody. ...

Mark Jones

Suspect in West Valley City fatal shooting in custody

A suspect wanted in connection to a Sept. 15 fatal shooting in West Valley City has been arrested, according to West Valley City police.

2 days ago

The Salt Lake City Police Department (SLCPD) requested help identifying a suspect who appears to ha...

Derrick Jones

SLCPD seeks help identifying person who left suspicious package downtown

Police said the package was left near 20 West 200 South on Monday, Sept. 25, 2023.

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Human hand holding a protest banner stop vaping message over a crowded street background....

Prosperous Utah Communities

Utah’s Battle to Protect Youth from Vaping Epidemic Faces New Threat as Proposed Rule Threatens Progress

Utah's strict standards of nicotine levels in vaping products are at risk, increasing health hazards associated with use. Read more about how you can advocate for a better future for Utah's youth.

Aerial photo of Bear Lake shoreline with canopies and people camped out on the beach...

Visit Bear Lake

Last-Minute Summer Vacation Planning? Check Out Bear Lake!

Bear Lake is the perfect getaway if you are last-minute summer vacation planning. Enjoy activities with your whole family at this iconic lake.

close up of rose marvel saliva blooms in purple...

Shannon Cavalero

Drought Tolerant Perennials for Utah

The best drought tolerant plants for Utah can handle high elevations, alkaline soils, excessive exposure to wind, and use of secondary water.

Kamas woman charged with killing her husband files civil suit against his estate