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Feds Won’t Charge John W. Hinckley With Murder in James Brady’s Death

John Hinckley Jr. -abc news photo

By Peter Hermann
Washington Post Staff Writer

Federal prosecutors said they will not charge John W. Hinckley Jr. with murder in the shooting of President Ronald Reagan’s press secretary in a 1981 assassination attempt, even though a medical examiner concluded his August death was caused by the old wounds.

The decision, announced Friday by the U.S. Attorney for the District, comes four months after the coroner decided that James S. Brady’s death at the age of 73 was caused by bullets fired 34 years ago outside the Washington Hilton on Connecticut Avenue Northwest. Reagan, just 69 days into his presidency, was severely wounded. Brady was struck first, above the left eye, and the bullet shattered in his head into fragments.

“The decision was made following a review of applicable law, the history of the case, and the circumstances of Mr. Brady’s death, including recently finalized autopsy findings,” the U.S. attorney’s office said in a statement.

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