STEPHENVILLE, Texas — A 25-year-old Iraq war veteran charged with murdering former Navy SEAL and American Sniper author Chris Kyle and his friend turned his semi-automatic handgun onto the pair while they were at a Texas shooting range, authorities said Sunday.
Eddie Ray Routh of Lancaster was arraigned early Sunday on two counts of capital murder in the deaths of Kyle, 38, and Chad Littlefield, 35, at the shooting range about 50 miles southwest of Fort Worth.
Capt. Jason Upshaw with the Erath County Sheriff's Office said Routh used a semi-automatic handgun, which authorities later found at his home. Upshaw declined to give any more details about the type of gun used.
Routh has not made any comments indicating what his motive may have been, Upshaw said. Sheriff Tommy Bryant said Routh was unemployed and may have been suffering from some type of mental illness from being in the military himself, but he didn't know if Routh was on any medication.
I don't know that we'll ever know. He's the only one that knows that, Upshaw said.
The U.S. military confirmed Sunday that Routh was a corporal in the Marines from June 2006 to January 2010. He was deployed to Iraq in 2007 and Haiti in 2010. His current duty status is listed as reserve.
Routh is being held on $3 million bond. Authorities did not know whether Routh had a lawyer yet.
Bryant said the trio went to the shooting range around 3:15 p.m. Saturday.