The Campaign For DA

2.11.2015

Sniper Trial: It's Already Off Course




Hey, I'm no expert on a capital murder case and especially the insanity defense, but some basic rules apply in all criminal trials.  The State is obligated to prove that the defendant intentionally killed Chris Kyle. That's it. (Then it's up to the defense to raise any insanity defense.)

By all accounts of the opening statements, the defense isn't going to contest the murder -- they'll just say that the defendant was insane at the time he pulled the trigger.

So why is the wife being allowed to present this glowing and long presentation of Kyle's life? The only issue for this jury at this point is what happened at that shooting range that day. Yeah, some judges in Texas will give a little leeway and let you get into some background but not much. Whether Kyle was a good husband, good soldier, good father, etc. is technically irrelevant to the issue before the jury. That sounds harsh, but that's the law. And the opposite is also true: If Kyle had a history of dishonesty, it has no relevance to this case and the jury should not be allowed to hear it.

But you know what the prosecutors are doing?: Trying to let emotion trump facts.  They know the jury will be back there in that room in a couple of weeks deciding whether the defendant was insane. And they want them to remember Kyle's wife on the stand when they make that decision. Why? Her testimony has nothing to do with that issue, right? However, they want the jury to think, "He might have been insane, but I just can't vote that way and do that to that poor woman."  It's basically cheating which happens in almost every trial in one way or another.

Extra: We learned today that when Kyle and his buddy were on the way to the shooting range with the defendant, Kyle texted: "This dude is straight up nuts."


24 comments:

Anonymous said...

You extrapolated all of that from a single tweet?

Anonymous said...

And we also learned that Kyle's killer never saw combat action so there is no way he could suffer from PMS.

Anonymous said...

What the hell is extrapolated?!?!?

Anonymous said...

And the news reported that the defendant was evidently drunk and/or high at the time of the shooting. So, why was Kyle even letting him hold a gun at all? If assumption of the risk was a valid defense in Texas, this would be perfect for it. So would: "I'm American Sniper so I think I know the best way to treat PTSD--by giving guns to people who may be wigged out by guns."

American Sniper: A liar and an idiot.

Anonymous said...

I believe Chris Kyle is.was a true hero.
That being said, what does that have to do with the trial?????
ALL of his accomplishments and his life story have absolutely zero to do with anything.
The trial SHOULD be based on the instant that this psycho pulled the trigger on two men. Period.
He was an armorer....he was not a "door kicker" or "grunt". He has no reason to have PTSD. Even if the VA gave him a rating for PTSD, I question how he got it.

Anonymous said...

How in the hell can nuts be "straight up"? I'm used to the dangly ones. My world has been rocked.

DF Confused Erath County Courthuose Crab

Anonymous said...

To 12:27

If you can't spell Webster, then explaining what extrapolated means would be pointless.

Anonymous said...

So Kyle not only had a problem with truth- he would text and drive?

Anonymous said...

He did, however, throw bodies into mass graves in Hati. That would have to mess a man up a little. PTSD is not just from combat, folks.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, some judges in Texas will give a little leeway and let you get into some background but not much.

WWWFSD?

Anonymous said...

12:15, so a victim of sexual assault or a person involved in a vehicle accident cannot experience PTSD? Clue phone is ringing here, the P.T. Of this diagnosis is post traumatic , not only combat participants disease

Anonymous said...

12:15....I think it would best to determine if the killer has a vagina. You have to have a vagina to suffer from PMS. No vagina, no PMS.

Anonymous said...

Kyle texted while sittin at a red light.

Mr. Mike Honcho said...

"It's basically cheating which happens in almost every trial in one way or another."

Author creates blog post.
Author poses question.
Author answers own question.

Anonymous said...

I am conservative, pro-military, and I support that Chris Kyle was a hero...I have also dealt with crazy people and I have no problem with this guy sitting in an insane asylum for the remainder of his life. Everything about this case points to the fact that Eddie Ray Routh was insane and having recurrent psychosis.
The systems put in place by the military and society to handle mental illness failed him and it cost Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield their lives. The VA and MHMR both need to be put on trial by the media and society as they are just as complicit as Routh himself. The military admissions process needs to be evaluated as well and more needs to be done to help anyone returning from war zone that is exhibiting the warning signs of PTSD. I am convinced this entire thing was preventable. We have a history of treating our military veterans like crap from a systematic level by not forcing our government to reform broken systems within the VA and military culture in general. It is time for society to pull the blinders off and get real about mental illness.
The irony is that the same ignorance about mental illness that allowed Kyle to let this guy handle a gun will also get this guy convicted of murder and sentenced to life (it would be death if it were on the table) instead of placed where he can get help. I have no problem with the prison sentence; the guy never needs to be in society again, it is just the principal of the matter.

Anonymous said...

Were there any actual witnesses to the murder? If not, doesn't the prosecution have to first prove that dingleberry actually pulled the trigger even if dingleberry signed a confession? Did he sign a confession? Is it a foregone conclusion that he committed the murders?

I ask these questions because I am leery of anything the media says these days. The truth gets twisted to suit the preferred point of view...

Anonymous said...

I'm going to have to agree with 2:06 PM on everything but, the guy never needs to be in society again.

I'm all for getting him help and have no problem with punishment for his actions, but with no hope for a future life, it would be a waste of resources to get him help.

I have seen mentally ill patients deemed hopeless eventually lead a productive life.

If a veteran is suffering from PTSD or something similar, I don't think a shooting range is the best place to take him. If Kyle thought him to be "straight up nuts", why would he let him get his hands on a loaded weapon? Bad judgement call.

One thing the veteran did accomplish: his actions demanded someone do something: to either help him or put him out of his misery. Problem is that our government isn't efficient at helping people, especially veterans.

You have no idea the internal pain and suffering unless you have experienced it.

Anonymous said...

This is an instance where a bullet in the defendants head would be best for everyone..

Anonymous said...

12:32 pretty easy to run your mouth about a dead man mr keyboard tough guy. You would never say that to mr Kyles face if he were alive. Coward...

Anonymous said...

2:06 made great points about the system.

Here's the comment I have...haven't trial lawyers been using emotion and the press, if they can get it, to their advantage if possible for the past 20 years or more?

Anonymous said...

Will they call upon the fake baby to testify?

Anonymous said...

9:11 This is bigger than what trial lawyers have been doing for years, they are simply defending a client, and when that job is done they move on. Political leaders need to take up the challenge and reform the VA and MHMR. As citizens we should be pounding on the doors of our legislators demanding it be done.

Not to take anything away from Kyle or Littlefield but I view them in the same light as the victims at Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, and so on. It is not about guns it is about how we fail to spot, quarantine and help folks with mental illnesses before they do harm. Yet our leaders have zeroed in on gun laws as a fix…a g#ddamn fool’s errand. That might mitigate some damage but it does not address the root cause. If a society is measured by how it treats its most vulnerable citizens, then American society is failing miserably...especially when it comes to our Veterans and our children. I’d damn sure my tax dollars go to fund a much larger network of in-patient and advanced psychiatric MHMR and VA centers than I would it have it go to build more prisons and homeless shelters.

Anonymous said...

8:54 Which Kyle would that be? The one that lied about Jesse Ventura, the one that lied about shooting people from the Superdome roof or the one that lied about killing two men at a gas station South of Dallas? You know the movie is a work of fiction, right? Kyle loved killing people and did not act at all like the movie portrays.

Anonymous said...

Dreet...


DREET!


Fake Carl Grimes