“John Hinckley won’t face charges in the death of former President Ronald Reagan’s press secretary, James Brady — whose death last summer was ruled a homicide, even though it happened more than three decades after Brady was shot by Hinckley.” That’s the announcement from US Attorney Ron Machen as reported by cnn.com. Two factors weighed in his decision not to press the case. First, Hinckley was found not guilty by reason of insanity in his original trial. Second, in 1982, “(t)he District of Columbia also had a ‘year-and-a-day’ rule in effect at the time, which prohibited homicide charges if the victim died outside of that time span.” Jodie Foster could not be reached for comment.
Well, duh!!!!! He was already tried and convicted, and Brady died from complications of medical issues unrelated to being shot. Again. Duh!
Actually, “the autopsy revealed the cause of death to be ‘a gunshot wound and consequences thereof . . .'”
Brady is hardly the only known case of delayed death. For example, David Gunby was shot in the back by Charles Whitman in on August 1, 1966. Gunby never recovered (neither did Brady) and Gunby died in 2001. His death was ruled a homicide by the medical examiner.
IANAL (or a doctor), but I find it fairly doubtful that a criminal connection could be made, beyond a reasonable doubt, between a gunshot wound 30 years prior, and the death of a man with many, many health issues at the time of his death.
There may be a traceable medical connection between the gunshot wound and one or more of his extant health complications at the time of death, but it was the unique confluence of *all* of his medical complications – including complications unrelated to that gunshot wound, and gunshot wound-related complications that could just as easily have developed stochastically over the course of three decades.
The idea of prosecuting now was a stupid political stunt, and would have been a gross waste of public resources.
A waste, yes, especially since Hinkley was found to be incompetent. But I don’t think that the case could not be proven.
two days in to the new year and chip has already thrown down with “stochastically.”
I’m stoked because I now have to determine if ol’ girl’s ass is ticklish. what a prickly pear.
Plus, he was just another psycho with a (D) after his name (like the attempts on Gerald Ford, the Giffords thing, the CO thing, the CT thing, the Boston Marathon thing, [there’s enough of them to choke a Google search]), and you don’t just gas a useful tool.
Actually, Hinckley’s father was a campaign backer of Georg H.W. Bush in the 1980 primary against Reagan. His brother was a friend of Dubya’s brother. Hinckley supposedly told his dad that he was trying to do what he coudn’t do, put Bush in the W.H.
Thanks Blue, for the (not previously released) grassy knoll report. I had thought there was only one shooter, who happens to have been (and continues to profess to be) a liberal and a Democrat. I hear-tell that his great great great great great grandmother could not even vote, but that (due to your report) now also a person of interest.
Quit runnin cover for Dems.
To charge with murder long after the event is stretching the definition of “proximate cause” past the screaming point.
But it would limit his unsupervised trips home.
@CGinTX, not necessarily. Let’s say that a person is shot in the head but doesn’t die immediately. Instead, he slips into a coma and stays comatose for twenty years and kept on respirators and other equipment until he expires. The gunshot is still the cause of death. The passage of time doesn’t change that.
Proximate cause is a tort term, not a criminal law term, and what it means is “legal cause.” Legal cause exists even if the event that caused the injury is not “proximate” in time.
One could make a good arguement.
“Proximate cause is the primary cause of an injury. It is not necessarily the closest cause in time or space.”
Were it not for the injuries inflicted by Hinkley, Brady had a life expectancy of 77 years. He died at 73. Give ethnic and social status, he likely would have lived into his 80s.
If Hinckley was going to be prosecuted, would his drivers license be suspended? Yeah, he has one of those.
It hurts my brain to think that this was even seriously considered.
Good. I mean, yeah, he shot Brady and Brady died as a result (22 years later), but haven’t we ALL been punished enough because of that shooting at this point?
Right, presidential assassination attempts on Republicans – perp gets conjugal visits to hold him over until release on his own recognizance.
Presidential assassination attempts on Democrats – perps get shot on-camera, in police custody and still get a whiney yearly rehash by the lazy media.
If you live in a blue state, you may be part of the problem, if you have a (D) after your name, are a rino, or a liberal, the problem is part-of-you, and you may be a Hinkley lover.
I’ll let you know when your punishment’s over.
And that Jodie Foster crack at the end added exactly what to the informational content of this?
If you did not know already, Hinckley claimed he did this to get her attention as he said he loved her. Also did it probably because she is a lefty and probably an outspoken critic of Ronald Reagan (I am no fan of him either especially with what he did to gun rights) so he wanted to impress her. That has been an ongoing joke for a long time now.
It wasn’t because of her views on Reagan. Hinckley confused his own life with the film Taxi Driver, where Travis Bickle contemplated assassinating a politician and saves Jodie Foster’s character from a pimp.
Well, it made me chuckle.
Apologies, should have been more clear. Fruitcake or not, smirkingly dragging her name into a crime that, even after 30-odd years, she *still* has no responsibility or cupability for, is the move of a total schmuck.
You would be the expert on schmuckhoog.
I’m hearing that with a little west rogers park yiddish query inflection…
“is the move of a total schmuck.” Yes, you are, now buy a f**king clue and sprout a sense of humor, hemorrhoid.
they were waiting for this decision before she would date him.
This is news why?
It’s not just news, but “BREAKING!!!!!” news…
Volokh has a legal analysis.
The only reasonable decision, both legally and in the realm of common-sense.
Another reminder that some medical examiner declaring a homicide doesn’t mean what the media think it means.