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Reagan aide Jim Brady's death ruled homicide

WASHINGTON (AP) -- This week's death of former White House press secretary James Brady, who survived a gunshot wound to the head in a 1981 assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, has been ruled a homicide by a medical examiner, District of Columbia police said Friday.

John Hinckley Jr. shot Brady, who lived through hours of delicate surgery and further operations over the years, but never regained normal use of his limbs and was often in a wheelchair. His family said he died Monday at age 73 from a series of health issues.

Nancy Bull, district administrator for the Virginia medical examiner's office, which made the ruling, declined to disclose the results of the autopsy and referred inquiries to District police.

DC police spokeswoman Gwendolyn Crump said the department was notified of the homicide ruling Friday.

Hinckley Jr. attempted to assassinate Reagan outside the Washington Hilton Hotel on March 30, 1981, just two months into the new president's term. Reagan nearly died from a chest wound. Three others, including Brady, were struck by bullets from Hinckley's handgun.

Hinckley Jr., now 59, was found not guilty by reason of insanity of all charges in a 13-count indictment, including federal counts of attempted assassination of the president of the United States, assault on a federal officer, and use of a firearm in the commission of a federal offense, as well as District of Columbia offenses of attempted murder, assault, and weapons charges. The District of Columbia offenses included charges related to the shooting of Brady.

William Miller, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office in Washington, said the office "is reviewing the ruling on the death of Mr. Brady and has no further comment at this time."

Calls to Hinckley's attorneys were not immediately returned.

Officials at St. Elizabeths Hospital in Washington, where Hinckley is a patient, have said that the mental illness that led him to shoot Reagan in an effort to impress actress Jodie Foster has been in remission for decades. Hinckley has been allowed to leave the hospital to visit his mother's home in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Besides partial paralysis from brain damage, Brady suffered short-term memory impairment, slurred speech and constant pain.

Brady undertook a personal crusade for gun control after suffering the devastating bullet wound. The Brady law, named after him, requires a five-day wait and background check before a handgun can be sold. President Bill Clinton signed it into law in 1993.

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derralh August 08 2014 at 10:18 PM

I would rather have Ronald Reagan with alzheimer's than this clown we have in office now

Flag Reply +93 rate up
43 replies
ded August 08 2014 at 6:55 PM

This is just dripping with politics. The Civilian Disarmament Movement wants to keep grinding this into the public's faces. Shame on them. Let the poor guy
rest in peace.

Flag Reply +76 rate up
13 replies
Joy August 08 2014 at 6:55 PM

I guess, if it's related to the original gunshot wounds that you can make this conclusion, but it's kind of like saying a lifelong smoker who died of lung disease committed suicide.

Flag Reply +63 rate up
25 replies
mgh406 August 08 2014 at 8:38 PM

The examiner's decision has a political smell, influenced by the anti-gun wacos.

Flag Reply +62 rate up
12 replies
dickn2000b August 08 2014 at 8:05 PM

Since Hinckley's insanity has been judged to be in remission, and since he has been allowed out of his hospital alone to visit his mother, it is perhaps time to charge him with first degree murder.

Flag Reply +54 rate up
16 replies
ejorillion August 08 2014 at 10:15 PM

this smell s like anti=gun bullshit, good try but it won't fly

Flag Reply +50 rate up
7 replies
knarfdr August 08 2014 at 6:49 PM

Hinckley is in no way "in remission". He was caught looking at books about Jody Foster on one of his releases, which is not allowed in his treatment. He still has his sick fixation on her. It's ironic because she's a lesbian. For the damage he did to all those he shot he should never be allowed out of the hospital, but should be in prison for life.

Flag Reply +42 rate up
6 replies
kcarthey August 08 2014 at 9:02 PM

Had the GOP had any responsibility and Reagan any decency, he would have resigned before leaving his hospital bed. It is well known that near death trauma in a person his age seriously deminishes mental capacity and as hindsight is now showing, that was certainly the case in Reagan's situation.
His continuing in office and running for a second term is one of the greatest scams ever forced on the American people.

Flag Reply +35 rate up
49 replies
jktejas August 08 2014 at 7:54 PM

I have always thought Jodi Foster, regardless of her sexual proclivities, has good reason to be looking over her shoulder. In addition to the pain inflicted on Reagan and the devastation on Brady, Hinckley has impacted the quality of life of Jodi Foster, who could not get rid of this delusional stalker, and I wonder if anyone has taken into consideration the concerns she may have when he is given any freedom.

Flag Reply +29 rate up
8 replies
Joe August 08 2014 at 7:02 PM

Guess he would really be upset to know she is a lesbian.

Flag Reply +10 rate up
3 replies
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