A judge who ruled that would-be Ronald Reagan assassin John Hinckley Jr. should be allowed to leave the psychiatric hospital where he had lived for decades says he got less "blowback" on the decision earlier this year than he expected.

U.S. District Judge Paul L. Friedman made the comments Wednesday during a talk at George Washington University in Washington, where he received an award.

Friedman has overseen the Hinckley case for more than a decade. Earlier this year, he allowed Hinckley to begin living full-time in Virginia, though he returns for monthly check-in visits with St. Elizabeths staff.

Friedman still gets monthly reports about Hinckley's activities and said he now has "one small part-time paying job." He did not say what that was.