Chris Kyle's suspected killer, Eddie Ray Routh, has requested a change of venue in the upcoming murder trial of the Navy SEAL portrayed by Bradley Cooper in American Sniper. On February 2, 2013, just four years after Kyle left the military, he and his friend, Chad Littlefield, were allegedly shot and killed by Eddie Ray Routh, a former Marine they were helping to cope with his PTSD.
"My client will pled not guilty by reason of insanity," Routh's defense attorney, J. Warren St. John, told the media.
Texas prosecutors overseeing the Chris Kyle murder case are not seeking the death penalty against the former Marine accused of shooting the military hero.
The Eddie Ray Routh change of venue request is not the only issue plaguing his defense team. The incredible success of American Sniper has left the attorneys very concerned about finding an impartial jury in the Chris Kyle murder case.
"The film will be an issue. I think any case with significant publicity has an issue with picking a jury. I've had them in the past, and anything that has significant national attention makes it hard to pick a jury," Eddie Routh's attorney said.
J. Warren St. John is not permitted to speak publicly about the Chris Kyle murder trial due to a court protective order preventing all involved parties from speaking to the press. In 2013, a Texas judge issued the gag order in the American Sniper trial due to the "unusually emotional nature of the issues involved in the case and the extensive local and national media coverage the case has already generated."