Kouri Richins called into court for a gag order
By Elena Castro,2023-06-02
SALT LAKE CITY ( ABC4 ) – Kouri Richins, a name now synonymous with fentanyl, and allegedly murdering her husband was due back in court on the 12th, but new court documents are calling her back in for a gag order hearing on June 2nd.
The motion for the gag order was filed by the prosecution in an attempt to minimize those involved in the case of talking with the press. The motion read, “This case should be tried in a court of law on the basis of relevant and admissible evidence, not in the court of public opinion on the basis of uninformed inaccurate sensation.”BACKGROUND: Utah author of book on grieving death charged with murder
Criminal defense attorney Clayton Simms broke down what this means for the trial.
“What they’re trying to do is limit the craziness around this. That won’t happen,” he said. “Is it an overdose or is it a murder? It touches on a lot of issues that are going on in society.”Close
Thanks for signing up!
Watch for us in your inbox.
ABC4 Breaking News Alerts
Court documents recently filed cited that those involved in the case; attorneys, witnesses and court personnel have been bombarded by media outlets trying to find answers. Documents reveal that even Richins has been in touch with a documentary filmmaker while she has been in jail.
“What’s interesting about the gag order is you can’t limit a defendant’s right to free speech. She’s free to do interviews, make a documentary, make whatever statement she wishes… Now, she has a 5th amendment right to remain silent, she doesn’t have to say anything,” Simms said.
According to the document, the court believes a witness’ safety is compromised due to being identified by the media. Simms said imposing a gag order in the name of witness protection is not the solution.
“A gag order would control that person from saying something to the media. It wouldn’t control a threat, injury, violence,” he said. “If you’re worried about their safety, give them an armed guard, move them to witness protection. Do other things to protect that witness.”
The hearing on the 2nd will not impact the hearing coming up on the 12th.Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.