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1972: Governor Wallace's attacker jailed

The man who attempted to assassinate Governor George Wallace has been sentenced to 63 years in jail by a court in Maryland, USA.

Arthur Bremer, 21, from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, shot White House hopeful Mr Wallace at a political rally in Laurel, Maryland on 15 May.

Mr Wallace, the governor of Alabama who gained notoriety in the 1960s for his segregational politics, was paralysed by the shots and three other people were injured in the incident.

A jury of six men and six women took just over an hour and a half to reach their verdict at the end of a five-day trial in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.

The defence had argued that Bremer was legally insane at the time of the shooting and that he had "no emotional capacity to understand anything".

But the court rejected this argument after the prosecution argued that he was perfectly sane.

"If this is Maryland justice, I cannot understand it"

William Bremer, father

Arthur Marshall, for the prosecution, told the court that Bremer had been seeking glory and was still sorry that Mr Wallace had not died.

Mr Marshall said: "He knew he would be arrested...he knew he would be on trial."

After the trial, Bremer's father, William Bremer, said: "I never saw anything like this.

"If this is Maryland justice, I cannot understand it.

"If 12 people heard all that testimony and cannot make up their minds that they were dealing with a sick boy, I just can't see it."

Bremer was taken from the court in a reinforced police van, and guarded by 15 officers, to begin his sentence.

It is not yet known whether Governor Wallace will be well enough to continue his bid for presidency.

In Context
At the end of August 1972 three appeal judges reduced Bremer's sentence for intent to murder to 53 years.

He is currently serving his sentence at the Maryland Correctional Institute. If he serves his full sentence he will be 74-years-old on release.

Governor George Wallace was confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life as a result of the incident, which effectively put an end to his ambitions in national politics.

In 1963 Governor Wallace had made national headlines when he declared: "Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever," and later blocked the entrance to the University of Alabama to keep blacks from enrolling.

But in the 1980s, after a long period of seclusion, he apologised for his early racist actions and won an unprecedented fourth term as governor.

When he died of a heart attack in September 1998, aged 79, black civil rights leader, Jesse Jackson, was among the many black Americans who paid tribute to him.

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