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Tapes of Reagan's shooting declassified

March 12, 2011 at 2:37 PM

WASHINGTON, March 12 (UPI) -- Audiotapes of Secret Service agents reacting to the 1981 shooting of U.S. President Ronald Reagan have been made public by the agency.

The agency disclosed Internet links to the recorded interchange between agents on March 30, 1981, when gunman John Hinckley opened fire outside the Washington Hilton, The Washington Post reported.

Of six shots fired, Reagan was hit, as well as Press Secretary James Brady, D.C. Police Officer Thomas Delahanty and Secret Service agent Timothy McCarthy.

The tapes indicate Secret Service agents weren't aware Reagan had been shot when he was whisked away in his limousine until the president began bleeding from the mouth.

The crackly audio tells of agents reporting "Rawhide," Reagan's code name, was OK and they were headed back to the "Crown," or White House.

About a minute later, the agent driving says in a very calm tone they were diverting to George Washington University Hospital.

Reagan walked into the hospital but collapsed as doctors were initially unaware he'd been shot.

The Secret Service audio link is at: www.secretservice.gov/press/Reagan_Radio_Traffic.mp3.

The transcript of the recording is at: http://www.secretservice.gov/press/GPA02-11_CommandPostAudio.pdf.

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