Hinckley A “Prisoner Of Politics”: Columnist


John Hinckley is a political prisoner, or a prisoner of politics, says Politico.com columnist Roger Simon. Hinckley was found not guilty by reason of insanity for the shootings of President Ronald Reagan; Reagan's press secretary, James Brady; a police officer; and a Secret Service agent in 1981. He has been locked up since 1982 at St. Elizabeths Hospital. Since 1985, Hinckley's doctors have said that his psychosis and depression are in “full remission.”

This week, a judge disregarded prosecutors and said Hinckley is not a danger to himself or others and should be free to spend more time outside St. Elizabeths and even get driver's training so that he can someday get a license. While prosecutors once argued that Hinckley was sane and deserved to be convicted, they now argue that he is insane and deserves to be locked away indefinitely. What is the purpose of locking him up, Simon asks? ” The purpose is politics. Nobody wants to be the guy who lets John Hinckley go free.”

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