Man Who Ate Pot Candy Must Stand Trial In Killing

From left: Kristine Kirk, Richard Kirk (Credit: KCNC)
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A judge has ordered a Denver man to stand trial in the killing of his wife, who told dispatchers moments before her death that he was acting strangely after eating marijuana candy.

Defense attorneys for 48-year-old Richard Kirk suggested Friday during a preliminary hearing that he was so impaired by the pot that he may not have intended to kill his wife.

However, Judge Elizabeth Starrs said there was enough evidence for a trial because Kirk showed he had the wherewithal to open a safe containing a gun and press the weapon to the head of 44-year-old Kristine Kirk.

Kristine Kirk was killed in the middle of a 911 call, during which she reportedly told dispatchers that her husband was hallucinating and scaring their children.

Twelve minutes into the call, police say Kristine started sounding "panicked" as she told the dispatcher her husband was grabbing a gun.

Arrest warrants say moments later, dispatcher heard a scream and a single gunshot. She was found dead by police responding to the home.

Police said Richard Kirk appeared to be on drugs when he was interviewed after the shooting. While "rambling" to detectives, police say he confessed to killing his wife.

A detective said the only substance in Kirk's blood was THC, marijuana's intoxicating chemical.

During Friday's hearing, a Denver police detective testified that relatives told him the Kirks were a tight-knit family, but that they had escalating financial issues. The detective said that Kristine Kirk had a $340,000 life insurance policy.

The detective also testified that the Kirk's 7-year-old son told police his father had asked him to shoot him, allegedly telling his son "he had to kill Dad so he and Mom could be together with God."