For three years prior to his last parole hearing in 2011, Dr. Daniel Brown of Harvard Medical School spent over sixty hours with Sirhan Sirhan trying to recover his memory of the shooting. Dr. Brown concluded Sirhan’s amnesia for events before and during the shooting was real but his findings were ignored by the parole board, who saw the gaps in Sirhan’s memory as a cynical ruse to minimise his responsibility for his crime.
Dr. Brown’s report inspired a television experiment by the British mentalist Derren Brown called The Assassin, in which he tried to hypnotically program an unwitting member of his audience to shoot the celebrity Stephen Fry. The experiment was modelled on the particulars of the Sirhan case and the ‘three automatic demonstrations of “range mode” behaviour in hypnosis’ Dr. Brown observed during his sessions with Sirhan, ‘each of which was followed by complete amnesia…’
I advised on the Derren Brown program and I think the opening sequence above shows the Manchurian Candidate theory isn’t as far-fetched as it seems. Read Dr. Brown’s report below for a full description of the “range mode” observed in Sirhan forty years after the assassination and totally ignored by the courts and the parole board to date.