Mark David Chapman, the man who killed John Lennon in front of his New York City apartment building in 1980, has been denied parole for the 11th time. Chapman, who has been eligible for parole since 2000, is serving life in prison for the murder of the former Beatle on December 8, 1980.
Chapman, 65, who is currently inside the Wende Correctional Facility, outside of Buffalo, New York, will spend at least another two years behind bars until he is again eligible for release after the Board of Parole turned down his appeal in August 2022, according to the Department of Corrections website.
Chapman was arrested outside the Dakota building after shooting the 40-year-old “Imagine” singer as he arrived home after spending time at a Manhattan recording studio with his wife, Yoko Ono.
“It was just a very sudden thing,” Ono told Inside Edition in 1997. “It was so sudden that it was very difficult to me.
“You never get over it — you just have to go on, I suppose,” she later told Inside Edition in 2000. “We thought that we were going to be together forever... John’s spirit in a way is still alive in people’s hearts — the statements he made, the music he made, it is still going around the world. It is like he is still alive in a way."
Chapman pleaded guilty in the slaying of Lennon.
When Chapman appeared before the parole board in 2018, during his last hearing, he was told “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 had traveled from Hawaii to kill Lennon in New York City in the fall of 1980. Chapman, a married Christian, loved The Beatles but felt inspired by Holden Caulfield, the protagonist in The Catcher in the Rye, and believed Lennon was a phony who had sold out his humble roots.
“I think in the end, the fact that he was too honest may have offended some people and may have really shortened his life,” Ono said of her husband to Inside Edition in 1997. “I think that sometimes you have to pay a high price and he did it and he gambled on it.”