Man accused of murdering wife due in court Wednesday morning

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Denver police arrested Richard Kirk on April 14, 2014 in connection to the death of his wife. (Photo: DPD)

Denver police arrested Richard Kirk on April 14, 2014 in connection to the death of his wife. (Photo: DPD)

DENVER – A father of three young children will face a judge for allegedly murdering his wife while she was on the phone with a 911 operator.

Kristine Kirk was on the phone for 13 minutes before she was killed. While police are looking into how they handled the 911 call and their own response time, there is a growing memorial outside the family home.

Police were sent to the home at 2112 South St. Paul Street at 9:32 p.m. Monday. The mother of three was pronounced dead at 10 p.m.

Sources say Richard Kirk, the husband and father, was hallucinating after possibly ingesting edible marijuana. During the 911 call, Kristine Kirk told the dispatcher that her husband was “talking about the end of the world and he wanted her to shoot him.”

When she refused, police say her husband shot her. According to sources, one of the couples’ three children witnessed it.

According to a probable cause statement, Kirk admitted to police that he shot his wife.

Kristine Kirk

Kristine Kirk

The 911 call lasted 13 minutes, police said.  DPD plans to investigate the emergency call and police response to the homicide.

“Anytime a person dies while communicating with Denver’s emergency services, we examine the circumstances to ensure that the incident was handled properly and we look for areas to improve upon,” said police spokesman Sonny Jackson.

Jackson said investigators were “looking at their possibly being a marijuana aspect to this particular investigation.”

"My heart goes out to those three boys and Kris’ family. Mom, dad, sister and brothers. This is a terrible thing,” said Lance Kirk, the victim’s brother-in-law and Richard Kirk’s brother.

Richard Kirk is behind bars. Neighbors, family and friends say they knew Kristine and Richard as a loving couple and devoted parents.

"Whatever those boys are going through right now, my thoughts and my prayers are with them and I hope that they find peace,” neighbor Kristin Fynewever said.

“I know that wasn't Richard,” Lance Kirk said. “Let’s just say that. I hope there are some answers that come out about this.”

Records show Richard Kirk does not have a violent history. Kirk is scheduled to make his first court appearance at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

This is the first murder in the University Park neighborhood since at least 2009, as far back as online Denver Police data goes.

LINK: See crime trends in your neighborhood with the DPD Crime Map

Since the beginning of the year, there have only been three “violent crimes” in the University Park neighborhood — one sexual assault, one robbery and one aggravated assault.



  • Kevin Snyder

    13 minutes on the phone with 911, and this woman lived in the “good” part of town. Maybe the cops were all busy watching a dog die?
    Remember, folks – when seconds count, the police are a quarter-hour away!

  • Ann Pirie

    When Kristine Kirk called 911, it was not about her safety but her husband’s. She had no clue she would become a victim until it happened. I am sick for everyone including the dispatcher. There are three orphans who are grieving this terrible and hideous loss. I hope extended family members can see to it that they still live good lives.

  • SpamFace Plant

    Apparently harmless “victimless” incident from the new seat of your pants marijuana industry. Highly potent products beyond capacity of novice users?
    Terrible outcome for young family if true!!!

    • Anthony Garcia

      Spam, the only way you can blame marijuana for this crime is….if the police dispatcher was high, IMO marijuana doesn’t cause people to hallucinate or become violent! On the other hand, for it to take over 13 minutes for a cop to get to someones house in the heart of Denver is insane.

  • Anthony Garcia

    This had nothing to do with marijuana, I’m quite certain he will use the oldest defense in the books…..I heard voices tell me to kill my wife, she was evil! Horsesh*t! This man is using a convienent excuse for a reason to kill, maybe he had an affair and she caught him, maybe she had an affair….there are a multitude of things that can set someone off, marijuana isn’t one of them!

      • Kristi Hernandez (@Kristi3ernandez)

        You must live under a stone, for your own benefit research something before you go out in public talking about the wrong stuff buddy. Trust me you will look smarter and people may listen. Drs and scientists and lawyers and nasa workers smoke or otherwise ingest marijuana, they dumb?? What do you do, drive a big truck from point a to b or flip burgers? Don’t look like a fool read something unbiased and learn otherwise, or you will one day be left in the dust wondering what went wrong.

  • Kristi Hernandez (@Kristi3ernandez)

    Are you kidding me fox31, you have been airing the commercials saying you were the one news station in Denver that wasn’t going to use fear mongering in your stories… Yet here we are watching all morning as you fear monger!!! There was not evidence or otherwise about this murderer having anything to do with marajuana and you are broadcasting that the reason is this maniac killed his wife because he was under the influence of marijuana???!! Helllllo, you can’t tell me every person at your station is brainless, who approved the commercial in the first place?? Duh!!! Do one thing and claim another that will surely fool viewers, Your word means nothing how can we trust your word with news??? Run the commercial, then this segment complete opposite, goooooodness what a group!

    • Sez Eye

      Are you ignoring the reports that he ate food laced with weed? You really need to inform yourself before you comment. Otherwise you will continue to embarrass yourself and bore the rest of us.

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