The E-T received information from Andy Kahan, a victim advocate for the City of Houston, that a letter written by Eddie Ray Routh — convicted murderer of American Sniper Chris Kyle and his friend Chad Littlefield — has appeared for sale on a website.
The website is called True Crime Auction House and has a plethora of what is referred to as ‘murderabilia’ for sale by dealers.
“What makes this sale quite unusual is of course the victim being one of our nation's heroes, Chris Kyle,” Kahan said in an email. “Most victims of murder sadly are never known with exception to their family and of course Chris Kyle became and always will be an American icon.”
Routh was sentenced to life without parole after the killings at the Rough Creek Lodge gun range on Feb. 2, 2013.
The letter alleged to be written by Routh is being sold for $35 on the site by someone who Kahan believes is a man by the name of Andrew Dodge. Dodge runs the True Crime Auction House website and Kahan says he is known for obtaining and selling items such as this.
At the bottom of the sale's page, the dealer writes, “The letter and envelope are both handwritten. The letter is signed, ‘Eddie.’”
Kahan explained that the letter was more than likely obtained by the dealer (allegedly Dodge) striking up a correspondence with Routh in prison.
So then, the question becomes how do we know the letter is authentic?
“These are ‘reputable’ dealers. It is a cutthroat industry and other dealers would out them for selling frauds,” Kahan said. “In all my years of monitoring this ‘industry’ Dodge has never been accused of selling fakes.”
Kahan said that whether Routh knows about the selling of his letter is unknown, but believes that dealers do coordinate with inmates to split the proceeds on these types of sites.
“I’m of the opinion that you shouldn’t be able to rob, rape and murder and then turnaround and make a buck off of it,” Kahan said in a telephone call with the E-T. “This is the first time I’ve ever seen anything from Routh put up on this site. Whether or not Routh is getting any of the proceeds is undetermined.”
Kahan said he has been monitoring websites like these for 15 years and gives lectures about the websites.
“I thought it was important to show that this business is thriving,” he said. “From where I sit this is probably just the beginning of the merchandising of Routh.”
The True Crime Auction House site has an array of items for sale from high-profile criminals, including an autographed photo of Charles Manson, an original polaroid photo of John Wayne Gacy and a magazine signed by Richard Ramirez.