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Man found guilty of murdering "American Sniper"

Chris Kyle was killed at a Texas gun range in 2013.

Chris Kyle
Chris Kyle
Image: Wikimedia

A FORMER US Marine has been convicted for the deaths of “American Sniper” author Chris Kyle and another man at a shooting range two years ago, as jurors rejected defence 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.

“We’re so thrilled that we have the verdict that we have tonight,” Littlefield’s mother, Judy Littlefield, said at a news conference outside the courthouse.

The Littlefield family had waited “two years for God to get justice for us,” she said. “He was faithful.”

american-sniper-bradley-cooper-as-chris-kyle-4-390x285 Bradley Cooper played Kyle in a recent film.

Kyle’s widow, Taya Kyle, had left the courtroom earlier in the day and had not returned when the verdict was read. Chris Kyle’s brother and parents were among a group hugging and crying inside the courtroom after the verdict was read. They did not issue a statement.

The prosecution painted Routh as a troubled drug user who knew right from wrong, despite any mental illnesses. While trial testimony and evidence often included Routh making odd statements and referring to insanity, he also confessed several times, apologised for the crimes and tried to evade police.

Read: The true – and tragic – story of the real American Sniper

Read: Seth Rogen banned from random US restaurant over American Sniper comments

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Associated Press

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