Prosecutors Say John Hinckley Is Still A Threat

Nov 30, 2011
Originally published on November 30, 2011 12:15 pm

The Justice Department says the man who shot and wounded President Ronald Reagan in 1981 still poses a threat to public safety.

Prosecutors are fighting an effort by John Hinckley to win more freedom from a mental hospital where he's been confined for decades.

During a hearing in Washington, the prosecutors said the government has been watching Hinckley.

Secret Service agents followed Hinckley last summer, when he said he was going to the movies during visits to his mother's home in Williamsburg, Va.

But prosecutors say the agents saw Hinckley go into a Barnes and Noble store and look at books on Reagan and presidential assassinations instead of watching the Captain America film as he claimed.

Lawyers for Hinckley say he hasn't engaged in any violence for decades and doctors have determined he represents a decidedly low risk.

A federal judge will hear testimony from both sides for several days before making a decision sometime next year.

If you're looking for more background, I filed a more detailed report on the hearing for Morning Edition, this morning.

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