John Lennon's killer Mark David Chapman denied parole a 10th time
Chapman, now 63, shot Lennon on Dec. 8, 1980
By Kenneth Lovett
New York Daily News
ALBANY, N.Y. — In a case of instant karma, John Lennon’s killer on Thursday was denied parole for a 10th time, the New York Daily News has learned.
Mark David Chapman was told the news after appearing Wednesday before a three-member parole panel this week, a source told The News.
Chapman will be watching the wheels from behind bars for at least another two years, when he is next eligible for parole.
The denial decision, obtained by the Daily News, said Chapman’s release “would be incompatible with the welfare and safety of society and would so deprecate the serious nature of the crime as to undermine respect for the law.”
“Your criminal history report reflects that this is your only crime of record,” the decision says. “However, that does not mitigate your actions.”
Chapman has had a clean prison record since 1994 and was deemed to be a low risk of turning into a repeat offender.
“Nonetheless, none of which out weighs the gravity of your actions or the serious and senseless loss of life you have caused,” the panel wrote.
“You admittedly carefully planned and executed the murder of a world-famous person for no reason other than to gain notoriety and while no one person’s life is any more valuable than another’s life, the fact that you chose someone who was not only a world renowned person and beloved by millions regardless of the pain and suffering you would cause to his family, friends and so many others, you demonstrated a callous disregard for the sanctity of human life and the suffering of others.
“This fact remains a concern to this panel.”
Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono declined comment through her lawyer, Jonas Herbsman.
Herbsman did say Ono again sent the parole board a letter asking that Chapman be kept locked up. He said the contents are the same as ones she sent in previous years in which she expressed fear if he was released for not only her safety and that of Lennon’s two sons — Julian and Sean — but also for Chapman himself. Ono has said he could be in danger from still-angry Beatles fans looking for revenge.
The parole panel agreed that Chapman’s release could be a public safety issue since “someone may attempt or succeed in harming you out of anger and or revenge, or for the same reason that you did John Lennon, to assume notoriety.”
Chapman, now 63, shot Lennon on Dec. 8, 1980, as the famed ex-Beatle and Ono returned to their Dakota building home across from Central Park after a late-night recording session.
Sentenced to 20 years to life in prison, Chapman currently resides at upstate Wende Correctional Facility.
In past parole hearings, the once pudgy killer has claimed to have found Jesus while behind bars.
Chapman has said he targeted Lennon because of his fame and a twisted belief that the rocker was a phony for living an elite lifestyle.
He is kept in protective custody against his will and works as an administrative clerk. He’s allowed out of his cell a minimum of three hours a day.
Chapman also is registered in the prison system’s “family reunion” program, which allows him conjugal visits with his wife, Gloria Hiroko Chapman, who married him 18 months before the murder, and visits with his stepfather. His wife could not be reached for comment.
Chapman in previous parole hearings said he’s willing to pay for his crime in prison “however long it takes, forever.”
He once angered Ono when he said he believed Lennon would have forgiven him.
Chapman said at previous parole hearings that if he’s released there is a minister who has agreed to take him in and give him a job.
Instead, he’ll likely continue his job as a prison porter.
©2018 New York Daily News
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