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John Hinckley, Reagan shooter, wants more time outside hospital

John Hinckley was insane when he shot and wounded Reagan outside a Washington hotel in 1981 a jury ruled, but doctors have said his mental illness is in remission. 

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John Hinckley is wrestled to the ground in this March 30, 1981 file photo after he slipped in behind cameramen, fired his weapon between them, hitting President Ronald Reagan, Officer Delahanty, and Secret Service Agent Tim McCarthy.

Ron Edmonds/AP

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The man who attempted to assassinate President Ronald Reagan wants to spend more time outside a Washington mental hospital, but a government lawyer says John Hinckley's request is premature, and adds Hinckley recently tried to cover up browsing at a store for books about Reagan and presidential assassinations.

A jury found Hinckley was insane when he shot and wounded Reagan outside a Washington hotel in 1981, but doctors have said his mental illness is in remission. In recent years he has been allowed visits of up to 10 days at his mother's home in Virginia.

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On Wednesday, a federal judge in Washington began hearing arguments that Hinckley should be allowed visits of approximately three weeks and eventually transition to living outside the mental hospital full-time. Government lawyers oppose the plan.