Published On: Fri, Oct 8th, 2010

Records show John Lennon’s killer, Mark David Chapman, had other targets

Apparently Mark David Chapman’s celebrity hit list was so long that he couldn’t recall all the names when asked by the parole board who heard his latest appeal for release, but he said that he targeted ex-Beatle John Lennon because he was more accessible, according to the transcripts.

Lennon’s killer recalled to the board on Sept. 7 that he had considered shooting Johnny Carson or Elizabeth Taylor instead, but he couldn’t remember whether he also thought about targeting Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis among others.

“I was going through that in my mind the other day; I knew you would probably ask that,” he told the panel via video-conference. “… I lose memory of perhaps the other two.”

Chapman was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison after firing five shots outside the Dakota apartment house in New York City on Dec. 8, 1980, hitting Lennon four times in front of his wife, Yoko Ono, and others. He pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.

According to an interview printed in People magazine in 1987, other potential targets included Lennon’s former bandmate Paul McCartney, actor George C. Scott, then-Hawaii Gov. George Ariyoshi and then-President Ronald Reagan.

Chapman told board parole board members – who denied his bid for release yet again – that his motivation was purely about himself, that he wanted to gain notoriety and wanted to “become somebody [but] instead of that I became a murderer and murderers are not somebodies.”

Chapman also revealed that his decision to remain in protective custody was made partly because it meant he could have yearly conjugal visits with his wife, Gloria Hiroko Chapman, who lives in Hawaii, according to the transcripts.

“They opened up the program to only inmates in protective custody; so I did that,” Chapman said

The Sept. 7 interview at Attica prison in western New York, transcripts of which were released Thursday, was 55-year-old Mark David Chapman’s sixth appearance before parole officials since he became eligible for release in 2000.

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