President Ronald Reagan's daughter Patti Davis said she has forgiven her dad's would-be assassin, but thinks he should remain locked up.
Davis weighed-in on John Hinckley Jr. just hours after a judge Wednesday sprung him from the mental hospital that has been his home for 35 years -- and granted him permission to live full-time at his mom's home in Virginia.
"When my father was lying in a hospital bed recovering from the gunshots that nearly killed him, he said, 'I know my ability to heal depends on my willingness to forgive John Hinckley'," she wrote at length on her web site. "I too believe in forgiveness. But forgiving someone in your heart doesn't mean that you let them loose in Virginia to pursue whatever dark agendas they may still hold dear."
See photos from the attack:
Ronald Reagan shooting
Ronald Reagan shooting
This photo taken by presidential photographer Mike Evens on March 30, 1981 shows police and Secret Service agents reacting during the assassination attempt on then US president Ronald Reagan, after a conference outside the Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C.. Police officer Thomas Delahanty (foreground) and Press Secretary James Brady (behind) lay wounded on the ground. Reagan was hit by one of six shots fired by John Hinckley, who also seriously injured press secretary James Brady (just behind the car). Reagan was hit in the chest and was hospitalized for 12 days. Hinckley was aquitted 21 June 1982 after a jury found him mentally unstable. (Photo credit should read MIKE EVENS/AFP/Getty Images)
This photo taken by presidential photographer Mike Evens on March 30, 1981 shows police and Secret Service agents reacting during the assassination attempt on then US president Ronald Reagan, after a conference outside the Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C.. Reagan was hit by one of six shots fired by John Hinckley, who also seriously injured press secretary James Brady (just behind the car). Reagan was hit in the chest and was hospitalized for 12 days. Hinckley was aquitted 21 June 1982 after a jury found him mentally unstable. (Photo credit should read MIKE EVENS/AFP/Getty Images)
354390 091: James Brady and a police officer are seen lying on the ground after being shot while the suspect John Hinckley Jr. is apprehended,at right, moments after the attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan, Washington, DC, March 30, 1981. (Photo by Dirck Halstead/Getty Images)
Officers with guns drawn rush towards assassin John Hinckley, not shown, after he fired his weapon hitting President Ronald Reagan, Officer Delahanty, and Secret Service Agent Tim McCarthy after a Washington hotel, D.C., March 30, 1981. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds)
FILE - In this March 30, 1981 file photo, Secret Service agent Timothy J. McCarthy, Washington policeman, Thomas K. Delehanty, and White House press secretary, James Brady, lie wounded on a street outside a Washington hotel after shots were fired at President Reagan. Federal prosecutors say the man who shot President Ronald Reagan and three other people in 1981 won't face new charges in the death last summer of Reagan's former press secretary. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds, File)
This photo taken by presidential photographer Mike Evens on March 30, 1981 shows President Ronald Reagan waving to the crowd just before the assassination attempt on him, after a conference outside the Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C.. Reagan was hit by one of six shots fired by John Hinckley, who also seriously injured press secretary James Brady (just behind the car). Reagan was hit in the chest and was hospitalized for 12 days. Hinckley was aquitted 21 June 1982 after a jury found him mentally unstable. (Photo credit should read MIKE EVENS/AFP/Getty Images)
Discover More Like This
BACK TO SLIDE
Hinckley, Davis wrote, "will have to check in sometimes with his doctors, and he will have to live with his 90 year old mother, which shouldn't cramp his style too much given her age and infirmities."
"His doctors have said that his psychosis and depression have been in remission for decades and his narcissistic personality disorder has lessened...quite a feat since narcissistic personality disorder is considered incurable," she wrote.
Davis said she "will be forever haunted" by the March 30, 1981 attempt on her father's life, which also left Reagan press secretary Jim Brady, a police officer and a Secret Service agent wounded.
"If John Hinckley is haunted by anything, I think it's that he didn't succeed in his mission to assassinate the President," Davis wrote.
Photos of John Hinckley:
Reagan attacker John Hinckley Jr.
Reagan attacker John Hinckley Jr.
John W. Hinckley Jr. is shown in this undated photo. A divided appeals court panel cleared the way Friday, Jan. 15, 1999 for Hinckley to make supervised day trips away from the mental hospital where he has been confined since he tried to assassinate former President Reagan. (AP Photo)
FILE- In this Nov. 18, 2003 file photo, John Hinckley Jr. arrives at U.S. District Court in Washington. Lawyers for the government and Ronald Reagan's would-be assassin John Hinckley Jr. have come to an agreement on conditions he would have to abide by if he is allowed to live full-time outside a mental hospital. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)
CORRECTS SPELLING OF HINCKLEY - In this photo taken March 19, 2015, John Hinckley gets into his mother's car in front of a recreation center in Williamsburg, Va. The last man to shoot an American president now spends most of the year in a house overlooking the 13th hole of a golf course in a gated community. He takes long walks along tree-lined paths, plays guitar and paints, grabs fast food at Wendyâs. He drives around town in a silver Toyota Avalon, a car that wouldnât attract a second glance. Often, as if to avoid detection, he puts on a hat or visor before going out. These days, John Hinckley Jr. lives much of the year like any average Joe: shopping, eating out, watching movies at Regal Cinemas. (AP Photo/ Steve Helber)
John W. Hinckley Jr., who attempted to assassinate President Ronald Reagan in March 1981, holds a pistol to his head in this self-portrait and obtained from court records in Oct. 1982. The FBI released the polaroid image, which was part of the evidence used in Hicnkley's trail. (AP Photo)
John W. Hinckley, Jr., who attempted to assassinate President Reagan, holds a rifle in Washington on Oct. 29, 1982. (AP Photo)
Presidential assailant John Hinckley Jr. peers from car window after a court appearance in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. on Oct. 4, 1984. A federal judge refused to give Hinckley uncensored access to telephone and reporters, and also refused Hinckley's request that he be allowed to walk around his hospital grounds for an hour a day. (AP Photo/Ira Schwartz)
U.S. Marshalls escort John Hinckley Jr. as he returns to a marine base via helicopter in Quantico, Va. on Aug. 8, 1981. Hinckley Jr. attempted to assassinate President Reagan on March 30, 1981. (AP Photo/Barry Thumma)
Secret Service agents wrestle with suspect in an assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan outside the Washington Hilton Hotel in this video screen shot from CBS News, March 30, 1981. Agents later identified the man as John Warnock Hinckley Jr., 22, of Evergreen, Colorado. (AP Photo)
Discover More Like This
BACK TO SLIDE
Hinckley, 61, got the green light to move in with his mom as early as Aug. 5 after U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman found his continued treatment at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington D.C. is "no longer clinically warranted or beneficial."
Under the plan, Hinckley would have to live with his mother for at least the first full year of his release before he could move - with the approval of his treatment team -- to a separate home either alone or with roommates.
"Mr. Hinckley recognizes that what he did was horrific," his lawyer, Barry Levine, said in a statement. "But it's crucial to understand that what he did was not an act of evil. It was an act caused by mental illness, an illness from which he no longer suffers."
The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute was not buying it. "Contrary to the judge's decision, we believed John Hinckley is still a threat to others and we strongly oppose his release," it said in a statement.
But Michael Reagan, the late president's conservative oldest son, tweeted that his father "lived" the Lord's Prayer by forgiving Hinckley.
My father did more than say the Lords Prayer He lived it in forgiving John Hinkley Jr...Maybe we should do the same....Mike Reagan
President Reagan's liberal son, Ron Reagan, has not yet weighed-in on Hinckley.
Hinckley was 25 in 1981 when he opened fire outside the Washington Hilton. Reagan survived being hit in the chest, but Brady was paralyzed after he was shot in the head -- a trauma that prompted him to found the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. He died in 2014.
The Brady Campaign did not take a position Wednesday on Hinckley's release, but took the opportunity to comment on gun-control laws.
"We may all feel differently about releasing back into society a man who tried to kill the President of the United States and permanently disabled Jim Brady," campaign honcho Dan Gross said in a statement. "But virtually all Americans should be outraged that it will be just as easy for Jim's would-be killer to buy a gun today than it was 35 years ago."
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump also weighed in on the judge's decision Wednesday, telling reporters at an unrelated news conference that Hinckley should not be freed.
Hinckley, who said he staged the attack to impress actress Jodie Foster, was found not guilty by reason of insanity and ordered to live at St. Elizabeth's for treatment.
Over the years, the court has loosened restrictions on him, and has allowed him to spend consecutive days at his mother's residence in a gated community south of D.C. Sometimes shadowed by the Secret Service, Hinckley has gone shopping and to the movies.
Prosecutors, however, have argued against increased freedoms for Hinckley, saying he has a history of being deceptive. They noted that he once wrote in a 1987 journal entry that psychiatrists would "never know the true John Hinckley."