Diary Extra: Lennon Murderer Mark David Chapman Pleads Guilty

On this day 30 years ago, [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]John Lennon’s[/lastfm] murderer Mark David Chapman plead guilty and remains imprisoned today. Three decades later, Chapman’s true motives remain a mystery to Beatles fans that many have attempted to solve.

Chapman obsessed over John Lennon, as well as J.D. Salinger novel The Catcher in The Rye. Chapman believed that he should emulate protagonist Holden Caulfield and protect all the innocence in the world. By killing Lennon, Chapman was attempting to inflict pain in the whole world, not just Lennon himself.

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Journalist Jack Jones backs up this interpretation in his book Let Me Take You Down: Inside the Mind of Mark David Chapman. Jones spent over 400 hours speaking to Chapman before writing the book, and later described him simply as a “psychopath.”

Fenton Bresler’s Who Killed John Lennon? goes a completely different direction, arguing that Chapman was programmed by the CIA and FBI to kill Lennon due to the Beatles’ leftist political ideals.

While conspiracy theorists love Bresler’s explanation of Lennon’s death, Chapman himself denied any contribution by the CIA or the FBI in an interview with Larry King in 2000.

What we know is Chapman killed one of the most beloved artists in the world and is still serving the sentence for the crime, being denied parole six times already.

What do you think was Chapman’s real motive behind Lennon’s murder?


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