STEPHENVILLE, Texas --A former Marine was convicted Tuesday in the deaths of the "American Sniper" author and another man at a shooting range two years ago, as jurors rejected defense arguments that he was insane and suffered from psychosis.
The trial of Eddie Ray Routh has drawn intense interest, in part because of the blockbuster film based on former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle's memoir about his four tours in Iraq.
Since prosecutors didn't seek the death penalty in the capital murder case, the 27-year-old receives an automatic life sentence without parole in the deaths of Kyle and Kyle's friend, Chad Littlefield.
Criminal law experts said the verdict hinged on whether the defense could prove Routh was insane and did not know the killings were wrong at the time they were committed. Jurors had three options: find Routh guilty of capital murder, find him not guilty, or find him not guilty by reason of insanity. If found not guilty by reason of insanity, the court could have initiated proceedings to have him committed to a state mental hospital.