UPDATE, 1:47 p.m.: The Third District Court has set another scheduling conference for Kouri Richins after her lawyer asked for more time to get familiar with certain financial aspects of the case.
Richins will next be in court Friday, Nov. 3 at 1:30 p.m., where once again, attorneys and the court will attempt to set dates for preliminary hearings.
The prosecution stated that they have not amended anything in their charges or findings in Richins’ case. However, prosecutors met with the Utah Attorney General’s Office to get a better understanding of Richins’ insurance fraud allegations. That means additional information could be filed within the next couple weeks.
The defense told the court they would need additional time to look over any changes the prosecution may be planning to make.
ORIGINAL POST: KAMAS, Utah (ABC4) — Kouri Richins, the Kamas mother and Utah author accused of poisoning and killing her husband in March 2022, is scheduled to appear in court at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 1.
Friday’s appearance is in relation to the murder case where Richins faces a first-degree felony charge of aggravated murder, two second-degree felony charges of drug possession with the intent to distribute, and a Class A misdemeanor charge for drug possession with the intent to distribute.
Richins and her attorneys originally appeared before Third District Court Judge Richard Mrazik in June for a scheduling conference. During the short proceedings, Both Richins’ attorney, Skye Lazaro, and the state prosecutor, Patricia Cassell said there is a lot to the case and asked for an extension in order to review and organize evidence that could be presented during trial.
Judge Mrazik said he felt some compulsion to keep the trial moving as fast as possible, given that Richins is in custody, but granted the request to reschedule the conference 60 days later.
During the scheduling conference or preliminary hearing, the court is set to decide whether there is reason to believe the crime accused was committed and to set dates for a trial, should the case continue on.
According to Utah Courts, the judge will listen hear testimony and review evidence to determine if the defendant – in this case, Kouri Richins – is bound for trial or if the case is dismissed. The scheduling conference also provides prosecutors an opportunity to amend the charges filed against Richins.
Judge Mrazik already heard from witness testimony during a bail hearing in mid-June. Three state witnesses took to the stand, providing background to the case while presenting early evidence against Richins. During the hearing, Lazaro had an opportunity to poke holes into the testimony with cross-examination. Following that hearing, Mrazik ruled Richins would remain held in custody in the days leading to the trial.
In the most recent update to the case, the State of Utah announced it would not be seeking the death penalty against Richins. State prosecutors said the decision was made in careful consultation with the father and two sisters of Kouri Richins’ late husband, Eric.
If found guilty following the completion of the trial, the aggravated murder charge against Richins is now punishable by 25 years to life in state prison.
Charges are allegations only. All arrested persons are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.