Friday, September 22, 2023
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Failed Reagan Assassin Hinckley Keeps Freedoms

WASHINGTON (CN) - Failed Reagan assassin John Hinckley, Jr., can continue to visit his mother's home in Williamsburg, Va. pending an upcoming request from St. Elizabeth's Psychiatric Hospital in Washington D.C. to expand the amount of time Hinckley spends away from the facility, a federal judge has ordered.

Hinckley has been incarcerated at St. Elizabeth's since 1983 after he was found not guilty by reason of insanity for his failed 1981 attempt to assassinate then-President Ronald Reagan.

The hospital and Hinckley asked U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman to continue the terms of his 2009 order granting him conditional release from the facility pending their filing of a final plan for Hinckley's long-term integration back into society.

In 2009, Friedman approved a conditional release plan allowing Hinckley to spend up to 9 nights at his mother's home, take on volunteer work and apply for a driver's license.

The Department of Justice has consistently objected to the terms of Hinckley's conditional release and Judge Friedman admitted in his 2009 order that Hinckley's relationships with women remained "troubling."

At that time Hinckley was known to be having sex with two women, one of whom was bipolar and the other was already in a long-term relationship.

During his trial in 1983 it was revealed that Hinckley attempted to assassinate Reagan to impress actress Jodi Foster with whom he was obsessed.

In his most recent order Friedman said he saw no reason to rescind Hinckley's privileges and noted that the hospital's treatment team and Forensic Review Board supports his's request to maintain his current level of freedom and that it would "ensure the maintenance of his progress and would be therapeutic."

Friedman gave St. Elizabeth's until June 30 to file its final proposal for Hinckley's conditional release from the hospital.

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