September 16th, 2010
02:58 PM ET

Killer: Lennon's murder meant 'I would become somebody'

Mark David Chapman, left, and John Lennon.

The man who shot John Lennon told a parole board this week that he killed the star because he wanted "instant notoriety."

"I made a horrible decision to end another human being's life, for reasons of selfishness, and that was my decision at that time," Mark David Chapman said.

"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 said Lennon was at the top of his celebrity hit list which included Johnny Carson and Elizabeth Taylor. He's been in prison for 29 years. He was denied parole on Tuesday.

Read Chapman's own words about the slaying

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Filed under: John Lennon • New York
soundoff (148 Responses)
  1. Goat

    I hope this guy rots and burns in hell for what he did. Lowest lifeform on this earth!

    September 17, 2010 at 7:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Lamb

      Really? Even lower than a tea-bagger? I don't think so, son.

      September 18, 2010 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mike

    lennon was a druggie that made druggie music for his druggie fornicating friends. if anyone else fit that description, and then died a violent gun-death at the hands of some nutjob, all of you hypocrites would be saying "good riddance", "all addicts should be executed" and crap like that. but because lennon knew a few bar chords and you happened to like what he strummed, he's a special case, he's the saint of the human race? you people are pathetic. i have infinitely more respect for addicts in alleyways, they are at least honest about who and what they are, unlike you lennon-lovin losers.

    September 17, 2010 at 8:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Cynic

      What songs have you ever written, idiot? What instruments can you play? How have you ever inspired anyone? You are the one who is pathetic. John Lennon might be dead, but his music will live forever. When you die, who besides your immediate family will care?

      September 17, 2010 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
  3. kevin

    Lennon was also another illegal immigrant who jumped in the front of the line because of his fame

    September 17, 2010 at 8:48 am | Report abuse |
    • John's Ghost


      September 17, 2010 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
    • peace

      Kevin, the one thing I agree with is he avoided Britian because of the socialist high tax on his work. Why dont other liberals get it.

      September 17, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  4. John's Ghost

    Shame on CNN! This is not "new" news. This tripe is 30 years old. Have you added anything to the story since then?
    CNN, how dare you give this "person" the fame he desires?
    No one should mention the name of the man who shot John Lennon.
    Refer to him namelessly as "the person who murdered John Lennon."

    September 17, 2010 at 9:19 am | Report abuse |
  5. K Harrington

    What a shame John's life was cut short by such a demented man. We love you John!

    September 17, 2010 at 9:20 am | Report abuse |
  6. Mary

    Rest in peace, John. How sad that you, who sang about love, life, tolerance and freedom, had to die at the hands of a POS who just wanted to waste someone famous in order to add "value" to his useless life.

    September 17, 2010 at 9:26 am | Report abuse |
  7. Bill Noonan

    Lennon was a Communist. He openly gave aid and comfort to our enemies in the 60s. He inspired men to be slovenly in their appearance. If I could, I would pardon Chapman and give him a medal for trying to correct society's ills.

    September 17, 2010 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
    • peace

      I didnt agree with all of his politics but he was no threat. Just an artistic hippie who wrote and sang great songs...

      September 17, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  8. David Howe

    My apologies to all of CNN, about 95% of these opinions are made by Troglodites, people (who make me look sane) what a sad world we live in. Most of these comments shouldn't have been posted.

    September 17, 2010 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
  9. rainsrubies

    Reading through the minutes of that hearing, it's obvious that he's still a complete loon. I don't think it would be in the public's better interest to let this guy out. Plus there is that chance that some equally deranged fan will end the man's life if he's released.

    As far as John Lennon goes...
    I love his work. I think he was brilliant.
    He did overdo it on drugs, he did cheat on his wives in ridiculous amounts, he had committed domestic violence, and he did walk out on his eldest son. Then he was shot just as a lot of that was turning around. When they released his autopsy report, he was completely clean, probably for the first time in decades. He had sought therapy for years to get through his domestic problems. And he had just begun reconnecting with his child.
    So tragic, I wonder what he could have produced had he not been shot.

    September 17, 2010 at 10:29 am | Report abuse |
  10. Harry Manback

    I love pickles!

    September 17, 2010 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
  11. monica

    Ok have you people listened to the words of imagine and then look at where the world is today, all because of greed and religion

    September 17, 2010 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
  12. TonyInNYC

    He is depraved, cold blooded, and calculating. If if got out of jail, he would do it again in order to be notorious for murdering two celebrities.

    September 17, 2010 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
  13. stacy

    He's still nobody - just the little weasel that killed the great John Lennon.

    September 17, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Terry d

    It doesnt matter if john ever wrote any songs. He didnt deserve to shot down in cold blood.

    September 17, 2010 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
  15. kayelley

    I was born the day he was shot. Never being a child of his generation his music however still influences mine. It has timeless relevance that most music today can only strive for. 30 years later no new songs yet we still hear his music...imagine.

    September 17, 2010 at 12:09 pm | Report abuse |
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