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Patti Davis: No Amount of Time Since the Attempt on My Father’s Life Is Enough to Heal



Photo of President Ronald Reagan and First Lady Nancy Reagan along with Vice-President George H.W. Bush
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I would like to stop writing about John Hinckley Jr. I wrote for Time magazine in 2000 and in 2011 about the man who tried to assassinate my father, on both occasions regarding his bids for increased freedom. But the guy won’t go away. In 2016, Hinckley asked for and was granted full release from St. Elizabeths Hospital in Washington, the psychiatric institution where restrictions on his freedom had been gradually relaxed.
Now he wants to leave Williamsburg, Va., where he lives with his elderly mother and older brother, and come to California to pursue a music career. He’d also like to do some traveling, according to his lawyer, maybe to Texas to visit his sister. At a hearing on Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Paul L. Friedman, who has indulged Hinckley’s requests for years, said, “It’s been a long time since 1981,” adding that he thinks Hinckley is ready for “the next step.”

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