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13-minute 911 call: 3 young boys witness hallucinating dad shoot mom in head

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The 13-minute 911 call by a Denver mom ended with a fatal shot to her head before dispatchers could arrive at the home of three little boys. During the 13-minute 911 call, the mom told the dispatcher that her three boys were afraid, that her husband was talking about the end of the world, and that he asked her to shoot him, as reported by The Denver Post on April 15. “Their three small boys were scared,” told the terrified mom the dispatcher.

According to the probable-cause statement in the case, Richard Kirk, the father of the three boys, was arrested at 9:55 p.m. on April 14. While being in the backseat of the patrol car, Kirk admitted to a police officer without questioning that he had killed his wife. The police report describes Kirk being taken into custody and the 911 call, but it does not state how much the three little boys had to witness.

On Monday evening, Kirk’s wife, 44-year-old Kristine A. Kirk, called 911 and told a Denver dispatcher that her three small boys were scared because her husband was hallucinating, talking about the end of the world, and asking her to shoot him. At the beginning of the 911 call, the mom said that the gun in the house was locked in the safe, but as the call went on, her 47-year-old husband had retrieved the gun. The 911 call ends with the mom's screaming and the sound of a single gunshot.

From the time that Kristine Kirk called 911 to the time that officers finally arrived at her home, 13 minutes had passed. By the time police officers entered the family’s home, Kristine Kirk was found lying on the floor with a single fatal gunshot wound to the head.

While Denver police are investigating why it took so long for officers to respond to Kristine’s 911 call, an investigation is also being conducted into the possibility that the boys' father had been taking edible marijuana prior to the shooting.

As reported by the Denver Post, police response times in Denver have increasingly lengthened during the past few years due to the availability of fewer police officers and budget constraints. A final report into the police response time investigation is not expected to be completed until June.

With the recent legalization of marijuana in Colorado, the question as to whether marijuana might have played a role in the deadly shooting is also being highly investigated. According to an article published by The Institute of Medicine, "although euphoria is the more common reaction to smoking marijuana, adverse mood reactions can occur. Such reactions occur most frequently in inexperienced users after large doses of smoked or oral marijuana.” A report published by the US National Library of Medicine (NCBI) states that there is an association between cannabis and psychosis. “Early use of cannabis did appear to increase the risk of psychosis.”

Shocked neighbors of the Kirk family describe Richard Kirk “as friendly, someone who always waved to those who were coming and going on the busy block.” Even though Richard Kirk did not have a felony criminal record in Colorado, he was arrested in 2000 on suspicion of driving under the influence.

The 13-minute 911 call that ended with one horrifying fatal gunshot to the head of the three boys' mom has thrown the Denver’s police response and marijuana into the media spotlight. However, Denver police spokesman Sonny Jackson did not comment as to whether any drugs were found at the home. He only said that “we are looking at marijuana as a possible part of the investigation.”

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