Life for death of sniper

AP/Houston Chronicle:
A former Marine was convicted Tuesday in the deaths of "American Sniper" author Chris Kyle and another man at a shooting range two years ago, as jurors rejected defense arguments that he was insane and suffered from psychosis.

The trial of Eddie Ray Routh has drawn intense interest, in part because of the blockbuster film based on former Navy SEAL Kyle's memoir about his four tours in Iraq.

Since prosecutors didn't seek the death penalty in the capital murder case, the 27-year-old Routh receives an automatic life sentence without parole in the deaths of Kyle and Kyle's friend, Chad Littlefield.

Routh showed no reaction in court, even when family members of Littlefield addressed him. His defense team said they would appeal the conviction.

Routh "took the lives of two heroes, men who tried to be a friend to you, and you became an American disgrace," Jerry Richardson, Littlefield's half-brother, told Routh in court.
Because he killed two people in the same incidence it was automatically a capital morder case in Texas, which meant that a guilty verdict would result in an automatic life sentence without parole, because the state did not seek the death penalty.  Routh did not give his defense counsel much to work with alternately confessing to the shooting after being caught in one of the deceased's truck.  Some thought his  attempt to set up an insanity defense looked feigned.  That was compounded by his actions which showed he did know right for wrong despite whatever mental health issues he had.

The jury came to its decision in a matter of a few hours after closing arguments.  It is one of the virtues of presenting a simple case.


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