John Lennon's Killer Denied Parole For A Seventh Time

John Lennon's killer was denied release from prison in his seventh appearance before a parole board, New York corrections officials said.

Ultimate Guitar

John Lennon's killer was denied release from prison in his seventh appearance before a parole board, New York corrections officials said.

Mark David Chapman, 57, was denied parole by a three-member board after a hearing Wednesday, the state Department of Corrections said Thursday. The transcript of his latest hearing wasn't immediately released.

Chapman shot Lennon in December 1980 outside the Manhattan apartment building where the former Beatle lived. He was sentenced in 1981 to 20 years to life in prison after pleading guilty to second-degree murder. The musician, singer and songwriter was 40.

Chapman was transferred in May from the Attica Correctional Facility in western New York to the nearby Wende Correctional Facility. Both are maximum security. The prison system doesn't disclose why inmates are transferred.

Chapman was denied parole for the sixth time in September 2010. He can try again in two years.

At his previous hearing, he recalled that he had considered shooting Johnny Carson or Elizabeth Taylor instead, and said again that he chose Lennon because the ex-Beatle was more accessible, that his century-old Upper West Side apartment building by Central Park "wasn't quite as cloistered." Chapman fired five shots outside the Dakota apartment house on Dec. 8, 1980, hitting Lennon four times in front of his wife, Yoko Ono, and others.

The former security guard from Hawaii said that his motivation was instant notoriety but that he later realized he made a horrible decision for selfish reasons.

"I felt that by killing John Lennon I would become somebody and instead of that I became a murderer and murderers are not somebodies," Chapman told the board two years ago.

Ono, 79, had said two years ago that she was trying to be "practical" in asking that her husband's killer remain behind bars. She said Chapman might be a danger to her, other family members and perhaps even himself.

In a 1992 interview at Attica, Chapman told Barbara Walters that it was dark when he shot Lennon in the back with a .38-caliber revolver after he exited a limousine, headed up the walkway to his apartment building and looked at Chapman. "I heard this voice - not an audible voice, an inaudible voice - saying over and over, 'Do it, do it, do it,'" Chapman said. He explained, "I thought that by killing him I would acquire his fame."

He has been in protective custody with a good disciplinary record, according to corrections officials.

Thanks for the report to Spinner.

102 comments sorted by best / new / date

    "At his previous hearing, he recalled that he had considered shooting Johnny Carson or Elizabeth Taylor instead, and said again that he chose Lennon because the ex-Beatle was more accessible, that his century-old Upper West Side apartment building by Central Park "wasn't quite as cloistered." It's scary to think that your life might be taken or spared according to such trivial criteria.
    This is very good news. Mark Chapman is a vile man.
    While calling this attribute surely is appropriate he is one other thing: mentally deranged. Reading up on various sources about what Chapman reported regarding his motives he clearly cannot be released without undergoing psychotherapy. I have no idea if any such measures have been applied during his 30+ years imprisonment, from what I know about the US justice system I strongly doubt it. The only alternative is to deny parole over and over again until Chapman dies in prison. Considering the cost and the result I wonder: what is the gain for anybody? For Chapman, for Yoko Ono, for the public? If society's official organs dubbed Chapman uncurable it would almost be more human to kill him already. (While I oppose the death penatly as anyone calling himself civilized should.)
    Good news. But if they did let him out, People would harass,torment and antaganise him for the rest of his life
    And how many days do you think hed have left? Prisons the safest thing for him. Im actually surprised hes survived prison this long.
    Think about it though - this is a man who was casually able to shoot and kill a man in cold blood, who has since admitted he only did it to Lennon as he was accessible. Would you seriously mess with him in prison?
    There are a lot more serious murderers in the jail that he's in, he simply shot a celebrity, his jail-mates probably ate their families.
    I guess if you're an inmate you have other things to worry about than the Beatles.
    I'm not the biggest fan of John Lennon, honestly, but this is good news. One less psychopath hanging around is good.
    Not surprising, barely news. It's like hearing Charles Manson is facing parole. You know he won't be released why even pretend like it's a possibility.
    Apparently Charles Manson was discovered using a cell phone in jail. Which begs the question, who the **** is calling Charles Manson?
    This is crazy, why is this being treated differently then any other mans death? John Lennon was a remarkable man but people die everyday. In the end why should his parole be treated any differently? Personally i think that no matter who you kill you should be locked up for life but still, people like this get released from prison all the time and how do you think the families of those victims feel? I just think its unfair to treat this case so special. How would you feel if your brother, sister or either of your parents got murdered and you found out years later that the person responsible got out on parole? That shit happens all the time.... Im expecting some negative feedback on this but thats fine, i just hope this gives people something to think about
    I agree with you on the point that people should be locked up permanently for murder and I understand the point you're trying to make, however, rather a good thing that at least 1 murderer is locked up for his life rather than having the same sentence as the ordinary murderer these days. As warped as the law is these days we can still take some satisfaction in knowing that Mark Chapman has a permanent sentence.
    They treat his case this way because he killed Lennon; People would tear him apart if he'd be let out of prison. Of course there's a difference in killing someone famous, people worldwide will recognize such a murderer and they will not forget.
    Agreed. I personally think anyone who murders someone (especially in the way he killed Lennon) should be denied parole repeatedly.
    Maybe someone should put him in a room with a gun & Chad Kroeger & just see what happens.
    Low Profile
    Good, if he did get released, it would be very likely someone would kill him so I think it's best he stays there for life.
    Yes that very well may be true. Say he does get released in two years. We could have some crazy guy kill him for the same reason he killed John Lennon. To be "The Guy Who Killed Mark David Chapman"
    Could it possibly be the case that this dude was set up? I hate to be THAT GUY but look at Lennon's ideology, not exactly capitalist is it? I think kennedy was a set up and i wouldn't be surprised if Lennon was too, just saying.. He may be trying to appeal so he can whistle blow? perhaps not but maybe....
    "I felt that by killing John Lennon I would become somebody and instead of that I became a murderer and murderers are not somebodies." There's no denying that he is a very interesting man, like all psychopaths are. He believed he was the real life Holden Caulfield (Catcher In The Rye), and read the book at the scene after shooting Lennon.
    As long as Ono is alive Chapman will never be released. Every time the chance comes for Chapman to have glimmer of hope for release she most likely sways over the parole board on keeping the man behind bars. And if that man ever does get out he won't be alive for very long.
    Anders Brevik got 21 years for killing 77 people in Norway yet this guy still remains behind bars?! I know this guy killed Lennon (and I am a fan of Lennon) but the guy has served his time, he should be able to go but with alot of surveillance.
    That's because Norway has a moronic legal system and 21 years is the maximum prison sentence allowed. And Anders Breivik could and mostly likely will be sentenced to preventive detention, which can be extended for as long as an inmate is considered dangerous to society. That's a very asinine comparison. Just because Norway has a retarded legal system we should let murderers roam free?
    Unless Chapman has a death wish, this is probably the best news he will ever receive
    I really want this guy out of prison. 32 years for one murder? People get 10 years for one murder, but he gets 20 and an extra 12 (and counting) just because it was Lennon. That's ridiculous. John Lennon may have been a great talent inspirational man, but that doesn't make his life more valuable than anyone else's. Not to mention that everyone is biased towards Chapman.
    I understand your sentiment because it does look like if you kill someone famous you get more time than for killing one of us "no names"..... just keep getting this nagging in the back of my mind that instead of lowering Chapmans sentence other killers sentences should be raised.....
    In the US, pleading guilty to second degree murder gets you WAY more than 10 years. I see the sentences that people get in Europe and they seem extremely light compared to America.
    I'm not trying to sound rude or insensitive or whatever, but this guy really needs to accept the fact that he's going to die in prison. A lot of the reason he's still behind bars is just because of who he killed, not necessarily what he did. If he had killed just a regular person or maybe even a less famous celebrity he would probably be out on parole by now but no one is gonna release the guy that killed a member of The Beatles.
    when you've been raped as many times as this guy, you gotta get the **** outta there as soon as possible.
    Yeah. No kidding. That is exactly how prison is and it makes me laugh to see all these 13 year old little boys saying, "But, but, but, he killed John Lennon!!!! How can he be freed????" He killed someone, yes. He has paid the price for it. And if you believe in God, then he will pay the price again after he dies. But that is true what Crissfoo has said. He probably has been raped countless times. Don't you think that is punishment in itself?
    This man doesn't need to be back in society ever. He should remain locked up and live out the remainder of his days in prison for shooting John Lennon in the back like a coward, a mere few hours after Lennon signed his copy of 'Double Fantasy'. Sickens me.
    Trolling or not you have made yourself look like an idiot in so many different ways with this shit lol
    I don't care if you kill John Lennon or some random bum, everyone deserves a second chance at some point.
    This news came out 2 (two) days ago... c'mon UG... steo it up a notch.
    Although he murdered lennon in cold blood and showed no remorse for well over a decade he isn't being released purely because who he shot and the fact is that itself is wrong. I'm not saying he should be released but just to say that it's amusing how hypocritical justice can be. They preach that prison can rehabilitate people and when they claim it works they still do not release them, so whats the point. Note they said he had a good record at the end of this article.
    Mr Winters
    I felt that by killing John Lennon I would become somebody and instead of that I became a murderer and murderers are not somebodies
    Qell, the guy is quite the genius.
    t's ironic actually because he did end up just like Holden Caulfield haha
    Sammy Mantis
    No murderers should ever get a chance parole, whether the victim be famous or a "regular" person. Making excuses for murderers like "everyone makes mistakes" and "he suffered enough" is not acceptable, and it is immature and naive to do so. Mindsets such as this are why we have so much crime in the first place. If criminals have nothing to fear, what incentive is there to obey the law?
    I think he did the world a favor. I'll bet John Lennon's son got a good laugh at his Dad's death (John Lennon was a horrible father that basically abandoned his children that weren't Yoko's)
    Do you know how many times people are falsely accused and convicted?? If you take every murder convict and put them in prison and do not allow a chance at parole, then you are saying that the court system doesn't matter and basically that others can kill each other with no consequences. Smh. Please, get educated.
    Predictable, really. Funny how we all cry for celebrities to be treated the same as everyone else when they're up in the docks, but kill just one of them and the murderer is the lowest scum of the earth and should be given no remorse, reconciliation or a chance for parole.
    I see what you're saying but do ya really think a guy that walks up and kills a person he doesn't even know in cold blood should be walking the streets? I don't.
    Ofcourse not, but SkepsisMetal's points still stands - If it was just some everyday person instead of Lennon, he most likely would have been released years ago.
    It's going to be a long two more years.... I bet most of you guys can't even imagine what prison is like. When do you think he has paid the price? Never? He made a horrible mistake. He's paid for it already, I think. Being let out is not going to grant him that much freedom. People will find him and they will kill him. That having been said, if he is let out, it's not like John Lennon has not received justice.
    And he sure as hell can't kill Lennon again. Though there are two more Beatles left. Why couldn't he have gotten Ringo instead? Damn.
    I still wonder/"imagine" what John Lennon would be doing and would've done had he still been alive. For some reason, I doubt he takes the Dancing With The Stars route. Between him and Hendrix, I feel their best material was never written or recorded.
    Ah let him go....If we're lucky he will kill Ringo and Paul and then we will finally be free from the world's most over rated band.
    WTF Lennon was the greatest most prolific songwriter EVER. Do you know they sent a beatles song in outer space in hopes of aliens receiving the transmission? overrated my ass, YOU'RE the overrated one my friend so don't talk smack about one of the greatest bands in history. what have you ever done?