- Texas man arrested for powder-letter hoax
- Islamic State opens ‘marriage bureau’ for single jihadists
- Drone almost blocks California firefighting planes
- Tornado rips off roofs, downs trees near Boston
- GOP: Environmental rules keeping agents from accessing border
- John Kerry: Millions displaced by religious fighting in 2013
- Federal appeals court rules against Virginia’s gay marriage ban
- White House says Russia ‘losing’ war in Ukraine
- Hamas turns to North Korea for weapons deal, Iran for money
- Syrian casualties surge as jihadis consolidate
Lennon’s killer denied parole for 7th time in NY
Question of the Day
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - John Lennon's killer was denied release from prison in his seventh appearance before a parole board, New York corrections officials said Thursday.
Mark David Chapman, 57, was denied parole by a three-member board after a hearing Wednesday, the state Department of Corrections said. The transcript of his latest hearing wasn't immediately released.
Chapman can try again for parole in two years.
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.
"Despite your positive efforts while incarcerated, your release at this time would greatly undermine respect for the law and tend to trivialize the tragic loss of life which you caused as a result of this heinous, unprovoked, violent, cold and calculated crime," board member Sally Thompson wrote. Board members Joseph Crangle and Marc Coppola agreed.
The panel praised Chapman's conduct and accomplishments but said "parole shall not be granted for good conduct and program completions alone." The board noted there was significant opposition to his release.
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.
At his previous hearing in 2010, Chapman 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.
TWT Video Picks
By David Keene
Allowing states to innovate could reduce dependency on bureaucracy
- D.C. seeks to stay judge's order allowing gun owners to carry in public
- Illegal immigrants demand representation in White House meetings
- White House says Russia 'losing' war in Ukraine
- Hillary Clinton: Forget Obama, George W. Bush made her 'proud to be an American'
- HAYDEN: Intelligence, evidence and the case against Russia
- Border surge puts Obama legacy on immigration at stake
- Romney would win popular vote in rematch against Obama: CNN poll
- Iraqi Christians rally at White House: 'Obama, Obama, where are you?'
- Report: 40% of weapons sent to Afghanistan are unaccounted for
- KING: "Man-caused disaster" on the southern border
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq