Man who tried to shoot up Nebraska classroom to be released

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LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A judge has ordered a state psychiatric hospital to release an ailing man who in 1992 tried to shoot up a University of Nebraska classroom of science students.

Retired Judge Paul Merritt Jr. ruled that Arthur McElroy, 66, has become too feeble to present a danger to anyone. Merritt ordered McElroy to be released no sooner than June 1 from the Lincoln Regional Center. McElroy is expected to go to a local nursing home, the Lincoln Journal Star reported Wednesday ( ).

Lancaster County Attorney Joe Kelly said Wednesday he has no plans to fight the order.

A defense attorney for McElroy didn't immediately return a call from The Associated Press.

McElroy, who has been diagnosed with delusional disorder or possibly paranoid schizophrenia, also has been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and gallstones. Officials have said he undergoes dialysis four times a week, and has needed oxygen in the past.

Dr. Klaus Hartman, who testified at McElroy's annual review hearing in March, said McElroy has been using a wheelchair for more than a year. Hartman also said McElroy lacks the strength to hurt anyone.

McElroy was prosecuted for attempted second-degree murder after he tried to fire a .30-caliber, semi-automatic military carbine into a science class of about 20 students on Oct. 12, 1992. The gun jammed in the attempt. A judge ruled later that McElroy was insane and not responsible for his actions.


Information from: Lincoln Journal Star,

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