Trial date set for Richard Kirk in 'marijuana edibles' murder of wife case

Posted at 10:38 AM, Sep 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-29 19:40:59-04

DENVER -- A trial date has been set for the man accused of killing his wife while high on marijuana edibles.

Richard Kirk is charged with first degree murder in the murder of his wife, Kristine Kirk, in Denver in 2014.

Last year, Richard Kirk changed his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity and was ordered to undergo a mental health exam.

While prosecutors did not release the results of Kirk's competency report in court Thursday, the judge set a trial date for March 6 after reading the report.

Kristine Kirk killed

On April 14, 2014, Kristine Kirk called 911 and told the operator that Richard appeared to be hallucinating and that she was worried about her safety and the safety of their children, according to court documents.

Police said she told the operator that her husband was so impaired after eating some marijuana-laced candy called "Karma Kandy Orange Ginger," that he was crawling through a bedroom window and cutting his legs on broken glass.

In the probable cause statement, authorities said Kristine told them "her husband was talking like it was the end of the world… and had asked her to get the gun to shoot him."

"At one point during the call Mrs. Kirk sounds panicked and tells the 911 operator that Richard was taking the firearm out of the safe. She next related that he had the gun and she didn't know where to go," the document stated.

"Within seconds, the wife 'can be heard screaming. The screaming stopped after hearing what [the detective] believes is the sound of a gunshot.  The 911 phone line remained open, but Mrs. Kirk is never heard from again,'" the detective wrote.

Officers entered the home and found a black semi-automatic handgun on the floor of the front room and a cartridge on the floor in a hallway. Police found Kristine Kirk lying on the floor nearby. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Richard Kirk's preliminary hearing

During Richard Kirk's preliminary hearing in August 2014, detective Detective Troy Bisgard testified that the only substance found in Richard Kirk's system was THC.

The detective said Kirk had purchased the marijuana-infused candy and a pre-rolled pot cigarette at about 6:40 p.m. -- just hours before the killing.

Bisgard testified the couple had been having marital and financial troubles. They owed the IRS $2,500 and had more than $40,000 in credit card debt.

A few months before the killing, the couple had argued over Richard Kirk mishandling a Groupon purchase for hotel stay in Glenwood Springs, Bisgard testified. Friends told police the husband had angrily cursed Kristine and his reaction had frightened her.

Kristine Kirk had shared her concerns about her husband's combativeness in a March Skype conversation with her sister.

After the argument, Richard Kirk shifted the direct deposit of his paycheck from the couple's joint bank account to his personal account, the detective said.

The husband also asked if he could move in with a friend, but the friend said no, Bisgard recounted.