Man Who Blamed Pot for Wife's Murder Gets 30 Years

Colo. man said he was hallucinating when he shot wife
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 8, 2017 8:22 AM CDT
Man Who Blamed Pot for Wife's Murder Gets 30 Years
This photo provided by the Denver Police Department shows Richard Kirk, 50.   (AP Photo/Denver Police Department, File)

Richard Kirk will not be going on trial for the murder of his wife—and neither will the "Karma Kandy Orange Ginger" marijuana edible he blames the killing on. The 50-year-old Denver man was sentenced to 30 years in prison Friday after he pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the April 2014 shooting death of his wife, Kristine, the AP reports. During a 13-minute call with a 911 dispatcher, Kristine Kirk said her husband was hallucinating and getting a gun after consuming marijuana-infused candy. Her family is suing the maker and seller of the pot edible. Kirk claimed the marijuana candy caused delirium and psychotic-like symptoms, though prosecutors noted that he was sober enough to remember the code to his gun safe.

One of Kirk's public defenders told the judge Friday that they had been ready to prove that marijuana led to the shooting, but Kirk agreed to a plea deal to save his three sons from having to testify, the Denver Post. Kirk admitted it had been his choice to buy and consume the marijuana, but said he didn't know it would affect him the way it did. "I know with certainty if I did not ingest that marijuana edible, Kris would still be here today," he said. Kirk's sons, who are now 15, 14, and 10, were present during the shooting. As part of the plea deal, Kirk relinquished custody of the boys to his wife's parents. He is banned from contacting them until the end of a five-year probation period that will follow his sentence. (More Colorado stories.)

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