The man who shot and killed “American Sniper” Chris Kyle and friend Chad Littlefield at a shooting range in Erath County in February 2013 now wants a new trial. He was convicted only a year ago in those murders.
Three years ago, former Navy SEAL and national hero Chris Kyle and his friend Chad Littlefield were shot and killed by a former U.S. Marine with PTSD. Eddie Ray Routh was convicted of those murders last year, and sentenced to life in prison without parole.
Now, Routh’s attorney, Warren St. John says his client wants a new trial. Routh was “suffering from severe mental illness” and “did not know his actions were wrong,” according to a brief filed in the state’s 11th District Court of Appeals. The brief continues saying “the appellant met his burden of proof to show that he was insane at the time of the offense, but the jury chose to disregard Mr. Routh’s severe mental illness.”
The brief adds that in his statements to a Texas Ranger investigator, Routh was “in a psychotic state” and that “The officer used a method to induce the appellant to give a statement that was in violation of the due process clause of the state and federal Constitutions.”
During the trial, Breitbart Texas reported that the defense team for Routh had argued that he felt Kyle and Littlefield had planned to kill him. The jury in Erath County convicted Routh in February of last year for the 2013 murders. The murders occurred at a shooting range near Chalk Mountain.
Since the murder and through the trial, the Associated Press reported that Routh’s family always said that he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder from a tour in Iraq and then a deployment to Haiti after the 2010 earthquake.
During the trial, prosecution and defense paraded a variety of expert witnesses, with the prosecution’s forensic psychologist, Dr. Randall Price testifying that Routh’s consumption of alcohol and marijuana worsened the symptoms of paranoia and produced “cannabis induced psychosis.” During the trial, the defense produced the prescriptions for Routh that included anti-psychotic medications.
The prosecution also pointed out that Routh had the presence of mind to steal Kyle’s pickup and lead police on a high speed chase before he was captured.
The State has until March 11 to file a response.
Rob Milford is a reporter for Breitbart Texas. You can follow him on Twitter