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Judge: Hinckley is Well Enough to Live on His Own


FILE - John Hinckley, left, gets into his mother's car in front of a recreation center during a sanctioned visit with her, in Williamsburg, Virginia, March 19, 2015.

A federal judge has ruled that John Hinckley, the man who shot President Ronald Reagan in a failed assassination attempt, is well enough now to live on his own.

Hinckley was found not guilty by reason of insanity for shooting and wounding the president and three others in 1981.

He had been confined for 35 years at Washington’s Saint Elizabeth’s Hospital, a mental health facility.

In 2016, Hinckley, who is now 63, began living with his mother, who is in her 90s, in Williamsburg, Virginia.

U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman wrote Friday that Hinckley does “not pose a threat to himself or others” and could live within 75 miles of Williamsburg in a location that must be approved by his doctors.

Court records show he is required to meet with his doctors every two months.

Hinckley was 25 years old when he shot Reagan in 1981 outside a hotel in Washington. He paralyzed Reagan’s press secretary, Jim Brady, in the shooting and wounded Secret Service agent Timothy McCarthy and Washington police officer Thomas Delahanty.

At the time of the shooting, Hinckley was suffering from acute psychosis and major depression and had become obsessed with the actress Jodie Foster.

Barry Levine, Hinckley’s attorney, said he will eventually ask for unconditional release for his client. The next court date is in June.

“His compliance with the court over the many years has been unfailingly flawless,” said Levine. “And if people knew him, they would like him.”

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