History Tip of the Day – July 10th

John Hinckley Jr. is acquitted, June 21, 1982

A jury of seven women and five men heard eight weeks of testimony from forty-one witnesses—psychiatrists, medical doctors, ballistic experts. The defense cited Hinckley’s delusions about his relationship with the actress Jodie Foster, his history of decline, and his diagnoses of schizophrenia and other mental illnesses to prove he could not be held responsible for his acts. The jury deliberated for twenty-four hours over four days before finding Hinckley not guilty by reason of insanity on all thirteen counts of shooting President Reagan, James Brady, Tim McCarthy, and Thomas Delahanty. He is taken to St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Washington, DC.