UPDATE: Federal and D.C. law enforcement officials are investigating James Brady's death as a homicide following a ruling by the Virginia medical examiner, a police spokesman confirmed to The Wire. Initial reports incorrectly cited a ruling by the D.C. medical examiner.

In a subsequent statement, the D.C. police said that its detectives along with the FBI and the U.S. attorney's office were reviewing Brady's case.

An autopsy was conducted and revealed the cause of death to be a gunshot wound and consequences thereof, and the manner of death was ruled a homicide.
 

Mr. Brady’s death brings the number of criminal homicides for 2014 to 71.
 
Members of Metropolitan Police Department’s Homicide Branch, the United States Attorney’s Office, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are reviewing this case."

ORIGINAL: James Brady never recovered from the wounds he suffered on March 30, 1981, when he was shot during John Hinckley Jr.'s attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan. That was the surprise determination made Friday by the Virginia medical examiner, who ruled Brady's death this week at the age of 73 was actually a homicide resulting from the 33-year-old shooting.

The decision means that Hinckley, who now resides in a mental facility in suburban Washington, could face murder charges in federal court, NBC News reported.

Brady was serving as Reagan's press secretary when he was hit by Hinckley's bullets outside the Washington Hilton in 1981. The shooting left him paralyzed on the left side of his body, confining him to a wheelchair for the remainder of his life.

Along with his wife, Sarah, he became a prominent advocate for gun control, and the Clinton-era law mandating background checks for licensed gun purchases bears his name.

Hinckley was found not guilty of the shooting by reason of insanity.