Disturbing new details have emerged from John Lennon’s murderer about the day he shot the legendary musician.
In comments published by the New York Post, Mark David Chapman revealed he was saving a bullet for himself having shot the former Beatle, but was too much of a coward to commit suicide, reports The Mirror.
Now 61-years-old, Chapman still claims the motivation behind the murder was his overwhelming desire to be famous.
The New York Post obtained a transcript from Chapman’s recent parole hearing – on August 24th – in which he spoke in-depth about the events that took place on December 8th 1980.
Chapman – a born-again Christian – recalled meeting Lennon outside the Dakota Building, the apartment block in New York where the singer lived with his wife Yoko Ono and their son, Sean.
Chapman told the parole board:
He came out – and this is a part that I really regret happening – he came out and as a ruse, I had his album and a pen and I asked him to sign the album.
He took his time. He asked me if I wanted anything else. He signed the album and gave it back to me then got in the limo. I often reflect on how decent he was to just a stranger.
Chapman returned to the building later that evening, this time with a .38-caliber revolver loaded with specially purchased hollow-point bullets and a copy of J.D. Salinger’s book The Catcher in the Rye.
When Lennon returned home Chapman fired four shots into his back, before calmly reading his book while he waited for police to arrest him.
Chapman said of himself:
That’s a true sociopathic mind, but I will say this – towards the end I did talk to myself. I sent up a prayer and said please help me turn this around. I couldn’t do it.
Other than that, there was no feeling towards his son or his wife or himself. I was obsessed on one thing, and that was shooting him so that I could be somebody.
And when asked why he fired so many shots, Chapman said it was to ensure Lennon’s death, and that he ‘knew from the beginning’ he had to ’empty the gun’.
Ultimately his request for parole was denied with the board citing the ‘premeditated and celebrity-seeking nature of the crime’ as their reason.
Chapman’s next chance at freedom will be in two years, when he will face the parole board for a tenth time.