The Mirror

Reagan Shooter’s Loneliness Had Handlers Considering Online Dating

Reuters/Brendan Smialowski

Betsy Rothstein Gossip blogger
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An online dating profile for John Hinckley might look something like this.

Loves his mother, art, lake views and long walks on the beach. Plays guitar. Lives on a posh golf course and has access to fishing, canoeing and kayaking. Oh and by the way: Previously suffered from psychotic delusions involving women. Once shot Ronald Reagan to try to impress Hollywood crush Jody Foster.

This was not far from becoming reality: Hinckley, 63, popping up on Match or, worse, eharmony, the site where they supposedly scientifically match you to your soulmate.

A Fox5NY tweet reads: “John Hinckley says he’s having trouble developing romantic relationships”

The AP headline out of Norfolk, Va. is only slightly less traumatizing: “Reagan shooter John Hinckley says he lacks close friends”

On March 30, 1981, Hinckley shot Reagan, his press secretary James Brady, who has since died, a secret service agent and a policy officer outside the “Hinckley Hilton” in Washington’s Dupont Circle neighborhood. Everyone survived the shootings.

Hinckley pleaded not guilty by insanity and was mandated to St. Elizabeths Hospital, a psychiatric facility, from 1982 to 2006. At that point, a judge relaxed his sentence. In 2014, the former assassin received new orders: he could be out in the community eight times, 17 days in each stint. This included “unsupervised outings lasting up to four hours” outside his mother’s home. (RELATED: Failed Reagan Shooter Secretly Lives In Lap Of Luxury)

Hinckley lives in the Williamsburg, Va. area with his mother and brother. The AP report says Hinckley told a mental health professional in 2018 that he’s at peak happiness, but struggles to “develop romantic relationships.” Hinckley also said he is “happy as a clam.” His treatment team briefly floated the idea of him dating, but ultimately decided against it, citing safety concerns for Hinckley.

Also alarming: He tried to date a neighbor, who called the “authorities” when she received a note from him asking her out on a coffee date. The piece suggests he believed he had “many women” when he resided in the mental hospital.

In 2014, court docs report that Hinckley still “exhibits deceptive behavior.”

How Hinckley’s treatment team could have contemplated dating as a means of relieving his loneliness is mind-blowing.