Updated at 4:55 p.m. by Tanya Eiserer:The man accused of killing Navy Seal sniper Chris Kyle and another man confessed to his sister and her husband that he had killed the men, according to court documents obtained by WFAA-TV.
According to the court records, two witnesses told police that Kyle, Chad Littlefield and Eddie Ray Routh arrived at the Rough Creek Lodge about 3:15 p.m. Saturday to use the shooting range.
One witness told police that he went to the shooting range shortly before 5 pm. and found Kyle and Littlefield lying on the ground. They were covered in blood. The witness said he called for help and began to perform CPR on the men.
When law officers arrived on scene, deputies found the two victims lying on the ground, having suffered multiple gunshot wounds. Police found numerous firearms at the scene, including semiautomatic handguns, semiautomatic rifles and revolvers.
Meanwhile, Midlothian police received a report from Laura Blevins who told them that she had received a call from her brother and that he wanted to come by and talk to her. Routh told Blevins and her husband that he had murdered Kyle and his friend. She advised him to turn himself in.
She told police that he was driving a big Ford F-250, which police later determined belonged to Kyle. He told the couple that he had “traded his soul for a new truck,” the documents state.
He then left their home driving the truck, saying he wanted to get to Oklahoma to avoid Texas authorities, the documents state.
Updated at 3:25 p.m. by Tanya Eiserer:
The 25-year-old man accused in this weekend’s killing of Navy Seal Chris Kyle and another man was taken to a mental hospital in September after “threatening to kill himself and his family,” according to a Lancaster police report.
On Sept. 2, Lancaster police officers responded to the report of a major disturbance in the 200 block of West Sixth Street.
When police arrived, they found Eddie Ray Routh walking nearby. He smelled of alcohol, the report said.
“Eddie was emotional and crying,” the report said.
Police also noted that he was not wearing shoes or a shirt. Routh told police that he was a Marine veteran suffering from PTSD.
“Eddie stated he was hurting and that his family does not understand what he has been through,” the report said.
Police spoke with Routh’s mother, Jodi, who told police that he had been drinking and that he had become upset when his father said he was going to sell his gun.
“She stated Eddie began arguing and stated that he was going to ‘blow his brains out,’” the report said.
Fearing for the safety of Routh and his family, police put him into protective custody and took him to Green Oaks Psychiatric Hospital for a mental evaluation.
Also, according to another police report out of Lancaster, Routh’s mother called police on the night of May 14 to report a burglary.
The report listed Routh as the suspect and indicated that nine pill bottles were taken. It’s unclear what drugs were stolen.
Dallas police say Eddie Ray Routh also had a run-in with them just last month.
On Jan. 19, a woman had called police to an apartment complex in the 7600 block of Churchill Way in North Dallas because she feared for Routh’s safety.
Routh was in distress and wanting to get help, so officers took him to Green Oaks for a mental health evaluation.
It was his second trip to the psychiatric hospital in four months.
Update at 9:30 p.m. by Sarah Mervosh:
Police say Eddie Ray Routh, the 25-year-old suspect in the murder of Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield, was tasered after becoming aggressive with jailers around dinnertime Sunday.
After eating dinner, Routh refused to return his food tray to jailers. He became aggressive and tried to attack them when they tried to get it back from him, said Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant.
Jailers tasered Routh and placed him in a restraining chair in his solitary cell. He is on suicide watch, Bryant said.
Bryant also said there have been death threats made against Routh since news of his alleged actions spread.
Update at 2:18 p.m.: Officials say that Eddie Ray Routh, the suspect in the double murder of Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield, fled the crime scene in Kyle’s Ford pickup truck.
At a press conference on Sunday afternoon, Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant said that Routh recounted how investigators believe the tragedy unfolded at a gun range. The three men arrived to Rough Creek Lodge and Resort around 3:15 pm. Kyle and Littlefield were found dead around 5 p.m.
Police were contacted by Routh’s sister and brother-in-law after Routh told them what he had done. When they arrived to Routh’s home in Lancaster to arrest him and saw Kyle’s pickup truck at the home, Routh tried to flee in the pickup. The brief pursuit ended in an arrest near Interstate 35 and Camp Wisdom Road around 8:34 p.m.
Routh is currently unemployed, Bryant said. He could not confirm whether Routh was on medication or was diagnosed with PTSD.
Routh’s mother, who is a teacher, may have contacted Kyle to “help her son,” Bryant said at the press conference. “We have an idea that that’s why they were at the range, for some kind of therapy that Mr. Kyle assists people with.”
Update at 11:28 a.m.: Eddie Routh, who was arrested on Saturday in connection to the fatal shooting at Rough Creek Lodge and Resort, is being held at the Erath County jail on a $3 million bond, according to officials.
Routh, 25, was arrested on two counts of murder and one count of capital murder, according to Lonny Haschel, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Routh, a former Marine and Iraqi War veteran, is believed to suffer from post-traumatic stress syndrome. Investigators say that he shot Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield at point-blank range around 3:30 p.m. Saturday.
Routh tried to flee police in his Ford pickup truck, but was arrested near his home in Lancaster after a brief pursuit, Haschel said.
The Stephenville Empire-Tribune is reporting that Routh is being held on a $3 million bond. According to their report, Routh was at the gun range to practice with Kyle and Littlefield when he turned the gun on them.
Original item posted at 10:17 a.m.: Officials have identified the second victim of a fatal shooting at Rough Creek Lodge and Resort in Erath County, which killed former Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle.
Chad Littlefield, 35, of Midlothian was identified as the other victim on early Sunday morning. Kyle, 38, and Littlefield were at the gun range on Saturday afternoon for charity event on behalf of Kyle’s Dallas-based security firm Craft International, when they were shot and killed.
Kyle, who wrote the best-selling book American Sniper, held the record for the number of kills by an American sniper. The Pentagon has confirmed more than 150 of his kills. The previous record was 109. For his service, Kyle was awarded two Silver Stars and five Bronze Stars with Valor. His autobiography,American Sniper, was released last year.
Kyle was dedicated to helping veterans, especially those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. He helped found FITCO Cares Foundation, a non-profit organization that provided in-home fitness equipment to veterans with PTSD.
“Our foundation, FITCO Cares, this country and most importantly, his wife Taya and their children, lost a dedicated father and husband, a lifelong patriot and an American hero,” Travis Cox, director of the non-profit, wrote in a statement released on Sunday morning.
“Chris died doing what he filled his heart with passion – serving soldiers struggling with the fight to overcome PTSD,” the statement reads. “His service, life and premature death will never be in vain.”
Lancaster police said late Saturday they had arrested Eddie Ray Routh, 25, as a suspect in the double slaying. Routh has been arraigned on two counts of capital murder, according to Texas Department of Public Safety.
Investigators said that Routh, a former Marine who is believed to suffer from post-traumatic stress syndrome, shot Kyle and the second victim at point-blank range.
Erath County Sherriff’s Department is holding a press conference this afternoon and continues to investigate, along with Somervell County Sherriff’s Department, Stephenville Police, Lancaster Police, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Erath County District Attorney and the Texas Rangers.
America’s Sniper: Chris Kyle Murdered. WHY?
The murders of former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle and his friend Chad Littlefield this past weekend raise many unanswered questions. The facts: [emphasis added]
From his perch in hide-outs above battle-scarred Iraq, Chris Kyle earned a reputation as one of America’s deadliest military snipers. The Pentagon said his skills with a rifle so terrorized Iraqi insurgents during his four tours of duty that they nicknamed him the “Devil of Ramadi” and put a bounty on his head.
The insurgents never collected, and he returned home to become a best-selling author and a mentor to other veterans, sometimes taking them shooting at a gun range near his Texas home as a kind of therapy to salve battlefield scars, friends said. One such veteran was Eddie Ray Routh, a 25-year-old Marine who had served tours in Iraq and Haiti.
But on Saturday, far from a war zone, Mr. Routh turned on Mr. Kyle, 38, and a second man, Chad Littlefield, 35, shortly after they arrived at an exclusive shooting range near Glen Rose, Tex., about 50 miles southwest of Fort Worth, law enforcement authorities said Sunday. The officials said that for reasons that were still unclear, Mr. Routh shot and killed both men with a semiautomatic handgun before fleeing in a pickup truck belonging to Mr. Kyle. …
Mr. Routh was captured a few hours later near his home in Lancaster, a southern Dallas suburb, following a brief pursuit. He will be charged with two counts of capital murder, law enforcement officials said.
About that excerpt, two observations: First, it’s unconfirmed that Routh suffers from PTSD, despite the widespread reports. Second, the reporter “forgot” to write “allegedly”, as in: “Routh allegedly turned on Mr. Kyle.” Has presumption of innocence gone by the wayside? No charges yet. No motive. No “allegedly.”
Both victims were married with children. This story has more facts from law enforcement:
Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant said Kyle, Littlefield and the suspect, Eddie Routh, arrived at the shooting range at Rough Creek about 3:15 p.m. Saturday. He said he believed it was the first time the three had gone target practicing together.
Less than two hours later, a hunting guide found the deceased victims and called 911.
Bryant said both of the men were shot more than once at close range with a semi-automatic handgun, which was recovered Saturday night at Routh’s residence in Lancaster. Authorities said they have no motive for what might have prompted the killings.
Routh, who fled the scene in Kyle’s truck, was taken into custody after the tires were spiked while he was trying to flee police about 9 p.m. Saturday in Lancaster. …
Routh, 25, is an unemployed former Marine who reportedly served in Iraq and Afghanistan. …
Littlefield was a fellow veteran and friend of Kyle’s.
His wife Leanne Littlefield is an assistant principal at Walnut Grove Middle School.
More about the suspect:
Pentagon records show that Mr. Routh is currently a member of the Marine Reserves. He was an expert marksman and Marine corporal who had earned several medals, including a Marine good-conduct medal. He served in Iraq from September 2007 to March 2008, Pentagon officials said, and was currently listed as “individual ready reserve,” meaning he could be called back to active duty.
Sheriff’s investigators said Mr. Routh was unemployed and since leaving active military duty had at least one arrest on a charge of driving while intoxicated.
Routh allegedly confessed:
“There were no witnesses. No one heard any type of an argument,” Bryant said.
At 5 p.m., a hunting guide discovered two men near the range who appeared to have been shot. The guide called 911.
By then, Routh had driven away from the resort in Kyle’s black Ford pickup, which he drove to Midlothian.
“He stopped and told his sister and brother-in-law what had happened,” Bryant said. “Heleft Midlothian and drove to his home in Lancaster. They [his sister and brother-in-law]notified authorities.”
Authorities located Routh at his Lancaster home about 8 p.m. Saturday.
“He made his way to a vehicle and drove away,” said DPS trooper Lonny Haschel. “That started a pursuit.”
Just before 9 p.m. Saturday, authorities used spikes on Interstate 35E and Camp Wisdom Road, where they disabled the vehicle Routh was driving. He was arrested without incident, police said.
The suspect is on suicide watch now, according to this article:
Sunday night Erath County Jailers had to get violent with the Chris Kyle murder suspect Eddie Ray Routh. That’s because he refused to give up his dinner tray to guards who came for it after the meal time was over, so they tasered him after he was aggressive.Now the sheriff in the small town is saying that the suspect had to be put on a suicide watch as well, and that he is receiving death threats.
Chris Kyle was being sued by former Governor Jesse Ventura, knew Sarah Palin and her family, and spoke out against gun control:
Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura filed a lawsuit last year accusing Kyle of defaming him in the book by exaggerating his description of a fight between the two at the wake for SEAL Mikey Monsoor, who was killed in Iraq in 2006.
The book quoted Ventura, also a Navy veteran, as saying he “hates America” and telling Kyle, who was mourning the death of a SEAL teammate, “You deserve to lose a few.” Kyle described punching Ventura out at the Coronado, California, bar. …
“He was complaining about the war, that we shouldn’t be there,” Kyle testified. “Complaining about Bush, that, you know, Bush was a war criminal. How we were killing innocent men and women and children overseas.” …
His relationship with another politician was warmer. His company did some security work for former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin …
“Chris was a wonderful man, a good friend, and a true American hero who loved our country and served honorably. He was loved and admired by so many, and he will never be forgotten,” the Palins said in a statement Sunday. …
In a Guns.com interview at a gun dealers convention in Las Vegas last month, Kyle was asked about President Barack Obama’s gun control proposals, which he said he believed to be aimed at “trying to ban everything.”
Banning 30-round magazines for assault rifles would be “opening the door to start taking more of our rights,” he said.
Stars and Stripes described Kyle as politically incorrect:
Kyle’s autobiography was unapologetically politically incorrect: During one visit home between deployments, he got a tattoo of a crusader cross on his arm. “I wanted everyone to know I was a Christian,” Kyle wrote. “I had it put in in red, for blood. I hated the damn savages I’d been fighting. I always will. They’ve taken so much from me.”
Something says that Kyle would be a poor fit in today’s Navy; he left in 2009. A crusader cross tattoo inObama’s Navy SEALS?
More will be written about Chris Kyle and Eddie Ray Routh in the coming days. What was the motive for his murder? Why did Kyle and his friend go to the shooting range that day with Routh? What did Routh tell his sister? Did Routh’s mother reach out to Kyle for help with her son, as has been suggested? Was Routh diagnosed with any mental condition? If so, how was it that he was still capable of being called to active duty? Was Routh on any mind-altering drugs, illegal or prescribed? Did authorities test his blood?
Why do Routh’s alleged actions fit so perfectly with leftist memes floating around out there: military service unbalances our troops or makes them too “aggressive”; veterans are dangerous; veterans shouldn’t own guns; mentally ill people fall through the cracks on background checks; handguns are as dangerous as “assault weapons”; legally owned handguns are as dangerous to society as illegally owned guns, ad infinitum?
A “politically incorrect voice”, belonging to a well-known, well-admired American HERO, has beensilenced at this critical time in the renewed gun control debate. His death will now serve to advance the arguments of the very people with whom he disagreed. Rather convenient.
Many people in this world likely had, in their warped perspective, reason to wish for Kyle to be silenced: associates of those he killed in the Middle East, chief among them. Will anyone look for a connection between the people who called Kyle the “Devil of Ramadi” and Eddie Ray Routh?
Or will this be written off as just another case of a crazy veteran acting out? If Eddie Ray Routh killed these men, then WHY did he do it?
USMC photo from Wikimedia, Christopher Kyle in Ramadi.
Doubts alleged killer Eddie Ray Routh suffered from PTSD
Paul Joseph Watson
February 5, 2013
An active duty US Marine has contacted Infowars to express doubts about the narrative behind the death of former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, alleging that the man charged with his murder, Eddie Ray Routh, may not have suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
38-year-old Kyle, New York Times bestselling author of American Sniper, was credited with the most sniper kills in U.S. military history. He was shot at point blank range by Routh at a shooting range in Texas on Saturday, authorities say. Kyle’s 35-year-old friend Chad Littlefield was also shot dead.
The two men had apparently been helping Routh work through Post Traumatic Stress Disorder PTSD and after his arrest, “Routh told authorities he was a Marine veteran,” reports CBS News.
However, an active duty Marine has doubts about Routh’s story, telling us that he never saw combat and therefore is unlikely to have suffered from PTSD.
The Marine, who was stationed in the same barracks as Routh in 2007 at Camp Lejeune, N.C, wished to remain anonymous but sent us his military credentials as well as an unpublished photo of Routh in his military fatigues. We were also able to verify that the email was sent from a legitimate .mil email address.
“After seeing this picture I just remembered this guy lived in the same barracks as me in 2007 in Camp Lejeune, N.C., he was definitely NOT a highly trained Marine he was a mechanic in for only about 4 years,” said the Marine.
“My friend deployed to Iraq with Eddie Routh and this guy never even went outside the wire, so the PTSD from combat as the news is saying is unlikely, and this guy was no highly trained Marine as they are also saying in the news,” he added.
The Marine also told us that Routh “was into drugs.”
“I’m sure this will all come out eventually. Please do not release my name, I am an active duty Marine and I don’t need the attention,” he concluded.
If Routh’s problems with PTSD were not genuine, he wouldn’t have had the justification to be under Kyle’s wing, suggesting he may have embellished the issue in order to gain Kyle’s trust before shooting him.
According to reports, Routh was taken to a mental hospital on two separate occasions in the months leading up to the murder. Authorities are yet to establish a motive for the crime.
As we reported yesterday, Chris Kyle was emerging as a prominent critic of the Obama administration’s gun control agenda and had begun running programs focused around putting armed security guards in schools as well as training teachers with firearms.
In an interview conducted weeks before his death, the former Navy Seal warned that the White House’s attempt to ban semi-automatic rifles was “just opening the door so you can start taking more of our rights.”
Eddie Routh's phone may show ex-Navy SEAL before death
(CBS/AP) LANCASTER, Texas - Authorities have seized a cellphone from the home of Iraq War veteran Eddie Routh, who is accused of killing former Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle and his friend. The phone may contain pictures of Routh with the victims before their deaths at a Texas shooting range, according to police documents released Thursday.
The phone, a box of 9 mm ammunition, drug paraphernalia and a blue-jean jacket were seized from the 25-year-old Routh's home after he was arrested near his house in Lancaster, Texas, according to a police search warrant affidavit, inventory sheet and other documents.
Routh allegedly confessed to shooting Kyle, author of the best-selling book "American Sniper," and Chad Littlefield on Saturday afternoon at Rough Creek Lodge in Glen Rose. Police believe he used the phone after the shooting to call his sister before driving Kyle's truck to her house. Routh told his sister and brother-in-law that the men "were out shooting target practice and he couldn't trust them so he killed them before they could kill him," according to the affidavit.
A public memorial service for the 38-year-old Kyle, reputed to be the deadliest sniper in American military history, is scheduled for Monday at Cowboys Stadium near Dallas. A funeral service for the 35-year-old Littlefield was set for Friday in Midlothian.
Routh is charged with one count of capital murder and two counts of murder. He remains jailed in Erath County on a $3 million bond.
Routh's attorney, R. Shay Isham, has said he will ask for a court-appointed psychiatrist to determine if Routh is competent to stand trial. His other court-appointed attorney, J. Warren St. John, said Routh was released from the Dallas Veterans Affairs hospital against his family's wishes just two days before the shootings.
In September, Routh was transported to a psychiatric hospital after he threatened to kill himself and his family, and he later told officers that he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, Lancaster police records show.