(DALLAS) — The widow of “American Sniper” Chris Kyle could tell something was wrong when he spoke to her from a Texas gun range shortly before he was shot and killed, she testified in court Wednesday.
Taya Kyle started to get worried when her husband didn’t respond to a subsequent text message, and said she learned her husband had been killed when a police officer showed up at her house shortly afterwards.
Pausing at points to wipe away tears during the first day of testimony in her husband’s murder trial, Taya Kyle told the court, “I’m not nervous. I’m just emotional.”
Eddie Ray Routh, now 27, the man accused of murdering Chris Kyle, 38, and Chad Littlefield, 35, Kyle’s longtime friend, took notes throughout Taya Kyle’s testimony.
She said that her husband had never met Routh before Feb. 2, 2013, the day that they went to the Rough Creek Lodge gun range in Glen Rose, Texas, and he had decided to meet with him at the urging of his mother.
Since retiring from the military in 2009, Kyle, who is recognized as the deadliest sniper in American military history, worked with veterans and regularly brought them to gun ranges.
Taya Kyle said that her husband believed that a week spent outdoors was more beneficial than a week in a hospital.
She revealed that Kyle himself had some difficulty adjusting to civilian life after a career spent largely overseas, noting that he drank and had night sweats. He eventually began to put on a little weight but he “still looked great,” she said in court.
The 40-year-old mother-of-two was the first witness called in Routh’s murder trial and will be followed by Judy Littlefield, the mother of Chad Littlefield.
The decision to have the women testify so early in the trial came largely because the judge ruled that no witnesses can be in the courtroom until after they have testified so they will not be affected by other testimony.
The trial began Wednesday morning with opening arguments from both sides, with District Attorney Alan Nash detailing Routh’s alleged actions on the day of the shooting and defense attorney Tim Moore setting up his planned insanity defense.
Routh faces life in prison if he is found guilty.
Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
Recent posts in National News