‘American Sniper’ trial verdict could come soon

If you have not been following the trial closely, we’ve put together a breakdown before a verdict.

Chris Kyle
FILE - In this April 6, 2012 file photo, Chris Kyle, a former Navy SEAL and author of the book “American Sniper,” poses in Midlothian, Texas. Jury selection begins Monday, Feb. 9, 2015, for the upcoming trial of former Marine Eddie Ray Routh, who is charged with capital murder in the shooting deaths of Kyle and Kyle's friend, Chad Littlefield. (AP Photo/The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Paul Moseley, File)

STEPHENVILLE, Texas (MEDIA GENERAL/AP) – Closing arguments are expected soon in the trial made famous by the movie “American Sniper.” If you haven’t followed the day-to-day trial, here’s what you should know.

Who is on trial
Ex-Marine, Eddie Ray Routh, is charged with killing Navy SEAL Chris Kyle and his friend, Chad Littlefield, at a shooting range two years ago.

What happened
Kyle was shot six times. Littlefield was shot seven times. Both Kyle and Littlefield had loaded guns in holsters in their waistbands, but according to an expert who testified during the trial, it didn’t appear they were ever able to remove them from their holsters.

What might happen to the suspect
Routh is facing a capital murder charge, but not the death penalty. Since, prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty, Routh faces an automatic sentence of life in prison without parole if convicted.

The defense
Routh’s attorneys have mounted an insanity defense. They argue he was psychotic at the time and didn’t know right from wrong.

Worldwide attention
The trial has drawn worldwide attention because of Chris Kyle’s memoir and the blockbuster movie it inspired, “American Sniper.”

 

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