The Murder of John Lennon: Parole for Mark David Chapman?

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John Lennon Murder

The Beatles’ once rivaled the most popular icons, religious or otherwise, in the world.

John Lennon was one of the two most beloved members of the Beatles and therefore one of the most adored people on the planet. 

John Lennon was murdered on December 8, 1980 outside the New York Dakota Hotel by Mark David Chapman, which has made Chapman an infamous character in American history.

Infamous because Chapman is now a member of the notorious killers of America club.

Chapman asked and received an autograph from Lennon earlier in the day, waited for Lennon to return home, and shot him in the back five times with a revolver.

The NYPD arrived, finding Chapman famously thumbing through a copy of J.D. Salinger’s Catcher In The Rye, which was used as part of the reasoning behind entering a plea of insanity at the start of Chapman’s trial.

Until Chapman withdrew his plea of not guilty by reason of insanity (against the advice of his attorney) because he had been given instructions from God to change his plea to guilty.

In an article published by the New York Daily News on June 22, 1981, Chapman displayed both his sanity and his guilt hours before changing the divinely inspired plea by answering just two questions by the district attorney: 

“What kind of bullets did you use?

Thirty-eight (caliber) hollow point

What was the reason for using hollow points?”

To ensure John Lennon’s death.”

Ironically, Chapman’s name continues to invoke anger amongst those loyal followers of John Lennon who will forever be remembered as an advocate of peace.

In 2000 Chapman was denied parole for the first time since his sentencing of 20 years to life in 1980. 

It seemed that at that time, though Chapman, a now well-known born-again Christian, may have believed that the true nature of his personality had changed, his craving for the glory and fame for his crowning achievement were just too tempting.

According to the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, “your most vicious and violent act was apparently fueled by your need to be acknowledged” and “during your parole hearing, this panel noted your continued interest in maintaining your notoriety.”

On August 23rd, 2012 Chapman was denied parole for the 7th time and remains in Wende Correctional Facility in New York. Yoko Ono wrote the parole board stating she believed he should be denied parole not only because of the crime he committed, because of possible retaliation from those fans seeking vengeance for John Lennon’s murder.

The John Lennon murder occurred because he was famous. 

Mark David Chapman said that he had considered killing Johnny Carson and George C. Scott, but since Lennon trumped them in fame he drew the short straw. 

We lost one of the great musicians of the twentieth century because a sociopath thought the best way to be on the front page of the newspaper would be to murder John Lennon.

Chapman wanted attention.

John Lennon is gone forever.

Unfathomable that the latter was precipitated by the former.