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John LennonJohn Lennon

Mark D. Chapman

Parole Board Hearing


STATE OF NEW YORK
EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT
DIVISION OF PAROLE

In the Matter of:
MARK DAVID CHAPMAN
DIN # 81-A-3860

HELD AT:
Attica Correctional Facility
Attica, New York
Parole Board Hearing
October 3, 2000

BEFORE:
COMMISSIONER W. WILLIAM SMITH, JR.
COMMISSIONER R. GUY VIZZIE
COMMISSIONER DANIEL J. DOYLE

PRESENT:
ANTHONY MOLIK, Facility Parole Officer II
THOMAS SHEDLER, Facility Parole Officer I
SAYEEDA GAULT, Facility Parole Officer I
NANCY OSTERTAG, APA

REPORTER:
MIDTOWN REPORTING SERVICE
INGRID F. ANDERSEN, Hearing Reporter
(716) 325-2130



EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER VIZZIE:
Q. Sir, you are Mark David Chapman?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Good morning. I am Commissioner Vizzie. With me are Commissioners Smith and Doyle.
COMMISSIONER SMITH: Good morning.
COMMISSIONER DOYLE: Good morning.
Q. Mr. Chapman, you are here for your initial appearance before the Parole Board. You have entered a plea of guilty to murder in the second degree. The Court imposed a term of twenty years to life; is that correct?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. We note for the record this is your first and only conviction of record, and going along with that, of course, is your first time in the State prison system; is that correct?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. This involves an incident occurring in December of 1980 whereby you were in possession of a .38-caliber revolver. You apparently had some premeditated thought with regard to this incident. You waited for the victim in question, Mr. John Lennon, and at an opportune time, you apparently shot him a number of times, maybe as many as four or five. The record indicates that perhaps the revolver discharged five times. You hit him four times with the hollow-point bullets, and indeed you caused his death. Is that an accurate depiction of what happened, sir?
A. Yes, sir, it is.
Q. Can you please tell us what you were thinking about at the time and why you would do something so horrible?
A. I, um, flew to New York a few months before that to do that crime with full meditation in my heart. I then was able to somehow turn myself around and came back to Hawaii, and I told my wife that all was fine. And then the urges started building in me again to do this crime, and I flew back to New York on December 6th and checked into a hotel, and then on the day of December 8th, stayed outside the Dakota waiting for him with intent to shoot him and kill him.
Q. How long did you stay outside of the Dakota, sir?
A. All day.
Q. All day. And how long would that have been?
A. I guess I got there about eight or nine o'clock in the morning, somewhere around there.
Q. This apparently occurred just before eleven at night?
A. Yes, sir. I was there a long time.
Q. You may have been there as long as thirteen or fourteen hours?
A. He came out of the building once, and that's when 1 got his autograph on an album, which was the latest, and I was there to get the signature.
Q. And what time was that?
A. Somewhere around noon or one, maybe a little later.
Q. Though you said you had thoughts previous with regard to this crime and —
A. Yes, sir.
Q. — and apparently you repressed those and left New York City?
A. Well, I.thoucht it was over. I thought I was able to get that out of me.
Q. When was that?
A. A month or two before.
Q. Mm hmm.
A. And I felt okay for a while.
Q. And how long had you been plagued with those thoughts to cause harm to Mr. Lennon?
A. I'd say about three or four months.
Q. And, Mr. Chapman, have you given thought in those long twenty years as to what's behind all of this and why you were so possessed with doing such harm to this person who, for all of us having read about this, was doing no harm to whatsoever on your life or your you at all, had no livelihood; have you given thought to that —
A.Yes, I have.
Q. — why you had to single this guy out?
A. I was feeling like I was worthless, and maybe the root of it is a self-esteem issue. I felt like nothing, and I felt if I shot him, I would become something, which is not true at all.
Q. Mm hmm.
A. But that's why I shot Mr. Lennon.
Q. And him in particular because he was someone that you admired, or you locked at him and his stature, and you thought this would have some impact on your life, sir?
A. Well, I originally — what happened was I was in the library, and I was looking through some books, and I came across a book called One Day at a Time, and I saw him there with photographs in front of his residence, the Dakota, and I was full of anger and resentment, you know. I took it upon myself to judge him falsely for — for, you know, being something other than, you know, in a lotus position with a flower, and I got angry in my stupidity. So it started with anger, but I wasn't angry the night I shot him. Q. Mm hmm. And you didn't attempt to flee; is that right?
A. Yes, sir. I did not.
Q. You just dropped the gun and you waited until you were taken into custody?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Perhaps by the doorman who was there?
A. Yes. The doorman, he actually came and shook the gun out of my hand, and it fell down, and he kicked it across the pavement, and I stood there. It was all up for me because that's why I stayed there, and that was the end of it.
Q. Have you ever tried to harm anyone else, sir?
A. No, sir.
Q. Ever thought about harming anyone else at any time in your life?
A. Well, there was a list of people probably after I thought of killing John Lennon. Probably — I thought he wouldn't be an attainable type of thing, and I did think of harming some people, [redacted] I can't remember his name now, [redacted] and a few other people.
Q. When did you have those thoughts, sir?
A. I would say within a month after that, probably in my thinking, if I can't get to Mr. Lennon, here's a list, here's a substitute list.
Q. When you say a month after that —
A. Roughly.
Q. — what do you mean by that; after you thought of — about John Lennon?
A. After premeditating the murder of him in my mind, I'm thinking, if I can't get him, here's, you know, a list of people.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER SMITH:
Q. Who else was on that list?
A. I can't think of anybody else. There was probably two or three others.
Q. Had those people had any contact with you that would have — you talk about the book One Day at a Time. Did that book cause, you to be angry?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Was there anything about any of the other individuals on that list that triggered say, for example, anger?
A. My perception of, you know, what I perceived to be their vanity, that angered me because I'm at this point made of nothing, and, you know, I'm seeing this glamour, and it's — it's jealousy I guess.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER VIZZIE:
Q. Society tends to acknowledge people and recognize people through their accomplishments, and for the very most part, it's because of positive situations, a doctor who saved someone for instance, or a fireman who goes into a burning building and saves a child. Apparently you had a very skewed thought in terms on how you would be acknowledged.
A. Yes, sir, it was skewed. It was wrong.
Q. Well, I don't think there's any dispute about that whatsoever. You have had some [redacted] in prison, sir, at least at the beginning of your sentence?
A. Yes.
Q. At the time what triggered those; what were those about?
A. I've been to [redacted]. First time I was probably [redacted] and I didn't eat for three days and just wanted it to be over I guess. I would say that's a fairly normal reaction compared to the first year of, you know, incarceration, for me anyway. The second time I was I violent. I was just full of anger, rage, because I was repressing my feelings of everything that happened. I think it just brought it all up and it came out. And then they were a little rough with me, which was fine, which is probably what I needed to snap out of that.
Q. You said you were full of rage and anger?
A. Yes.
Q. Were you violent toward anyone in particular?
A. Well, I was screaming and acting out.
Q. You were out of control?
A. Yes.
Q. [redacted]
A. [redacted]
Q. And you said that you were [redacted]?
A. Well, that was the first time when I didn't eat. I wasn't violent then. I was just kind of, you know —
Q. Had you ever been [redacted] prior to that, before this incident occurred?
A. Yes,[redacted] in Hawaii.
Q. And when was that?
A. That's why I flew to Hawaii originally [redacted].
Q. I'm sorry?
A. [redacted] something like that,
Q. Were you working at the time this crime occurred?
A. Was I working? No. I had probably — just had quit my job maybe within a month before the crime.
Q. And what funds did you have to support yourself?
A. Um, my wife worked. I would imagine I had some money in savings, like probably when I sold a painting to get money to go to work.
Q. Was she aware of your plan?
A. She was not until I came back the first time and told her what had happened and told her that it was okay. And I lied to her and told her I threw the gun in the ocean, which I didn't. And I told her it was, over, but it wasn't. My grandmother came, and I remember driving her around and her friends — she's passed on now so I can speak about that driving around in the car, and just these thoughts just keep — it was an obsession. It was like the thoughts kept coming in, and I —I accepted them.
Q. It was an obsession you couldn't control, and you had to get it done; would that be correct?
A. I feel that on the night of the crime, it was an obsession, but I could have controlled it earlier. I could have turned it around, and that's why I pled guilty, because I could have stopped, you know. I -- at the time, you know, you are so swept up in it that you just kind of have to go a with where this takes you, but earlier I could have not stepped into a river, and that's where I was wrong. I could have changed it, and I chose not to. I felt honestly in my I heart the Lord told me twice, don't do this, you know, and I told him, no, basically and went my own way. That's what happened.
Q. Had you made it part of your lifestyle to carry a gun on the streets?
A. No. I bought the gun specifically for that reason.
Q. How do you think you have improved yourself in the prison setting, sir; what have you done to advance your cause?
A. Well, the first few years were hard because the adjustment to incarceration, and I over the years, say the eighties, have gotten relatively slowly but surely on a more even keel mentally. I attribute that to God, and I attribute that to being by myself for a number of years and just having time probably alone and to think this out. And then toward the end of the eighties, I just started clearing up. I had a clear mind. I didn't feel I was schizophrenic, and I put down for the family reunion program, and people started coming to see me on a regular basis. I became, if you will, more religious. And in the nineties, I kept on getting better and better and clearer and clearer and on my feet again.
Q. Did you take drugs on the street, Mr. Chapman?
A. Yes, I did, when I was a teenager.
Q. What kind of drugs and for how long?
A. Anything except heroin, probably a year and a half or two years, maybe a little more.
Q. And did you ever get help for that problem?
A. No.
Q. Ever thought about getting help?
A. Well, it was so long ago, I — I don't think I have a problem with drugs. Alcohol is probably my problem, not drugs. I don't — I don't think — the thought of drugs —
Q. Were you under the influence of any mind-altering substance the night of the crime?
A. No.
Q. Now we see that your disciplinary record has been pretty exemplary in prison over the course of twenty years. Actually you've been in the system since the summer of eighty-one; right?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. So in nineteen years and some odd months, you have only had two Tier II tickets?
A. That's right.
Q. And we know that you have done some programming, self-study, you've have some college —
A. Pretty minor.
Q. — credits?
A. Pretty minor stuff.
Q. Though audiotape, you've taken that; right?
A. Yes.
Q. And Cephas volunteer. What do you do with that, sir?
A. Well, earlier, not in the last two years, but I knew Harold Steele, who founded Cephas, used to come in to see me numerous times, and Ken Siegel, who is also a member of Cephas, came to see me, and a few other people from Cephas.
Q. Right.
A. Just to talk, not on an official kind of thing.
Q. For the most part, however, and primarily because of security reasons, you are in special housing, and you are to yourself; right?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. And we see that you have had visits from your wife;is that right?
A. She's been with me from — from the beginning.
Q. And she lives where?
A. In Hawaii.
Q. What does she do?
A. She works in [redacted].
Q. How often does she come here?
A. Right now twice a year.
Q. Twice a year?
A. For about two weeks each time.
Q. Where are you planning to live if you are paroled, Mr. Chapman?
A. Well, I wrote down there that I would immediately try to find a job, and I really want to go from place to place, at least in the state, church to church, and tell people what happened to me and point them the way to Christ.
Q. When you say find a job, do you have any particular focus?
A. No. I asked a friend of mine to try to find me a job. Obviously, there's some things that I can't do, couldn't do. And he talked to a farmer, a neighbor of his, and the farmer said, 1'e-t me think about it for a while, which I can't blame him. And he said that after some soul searching, he would give me a job on his farm.
Q. And there's a friend you would like to live with, Mr. Chapman?
A. Yes, just temporary.
Q. Who's that friend?
A. [redacted]
Q. And what relationship does he have with you?
A. He's [redacted] for the [redacted]. He's also [redacted], and he's also a friend, and I didn't know where to. go. I — I was stymied to fill out that form, and so I prayed about it. And I asked [redacted] on the phone, you know, could you put me up for a couple weeks? And he said, I was thinking just the same thing. Just on a temporary basis until I could find a place. This is all, of course, you know, what's the word? Stipulation.

COMMISSIONER VIZZIE: Commissioners Smith and Doyle, do you have anything further?
COMMISSIONER SMITH: Yes, I have a couple questions, and in terms of just a couple comments too.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER SMITH:
Q. You talked about possibly working on a farm. Have you ever done that type of work before?
A. No, sir.
Q. What were your — you mentioned you had been let go from your job in Hawaii. What were you doing there?
A. Well, I wasn't let go. I quit. I was a maintenance man at the time, and before that I worked as a security guard, and these were all jobs in keeping with what 1 thought I could do. But before that, I worked with the YMCA for years and have been to Beirut and worked with Vietnamese refugees through the YMCA. I would say the majority of my working experience, which included a lot of other jobs, was working basically with the YMCA, and in the hospital too.
Q. In the hospital?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Where had you purchased the weapon?
A. I think it was J & S Gun Sales in Honolulu.
Q. You transported the gun from Honolulu to New York State?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. In the beginning, the first time that you came?
A. Yes.
Q. And you knew that it was illegal to transport that weapon?
A. Probably, yes.
Q. You brought it with the plan that you talked about?
A. Yes, sir. It was right in my luggage.
Q. So you carried it on board?
A. In the luggage I think that was stowed underneath the plane, not on the passenger area.
Q. What about the second time you came here?
A. Same thing, in the baggage.
Q. Did you buy that legally in Hawaii?
A. I bought it legally.
Q. What did it cost you?
A. A hundred sixty, seventy dollars, something like that.
Q. Did you have any other guns that you ever owned?
A. Yes. When I worked as a security guard, I owned a standard .38 revolver for work, and then I owned another weapon, a Ruger Blackhawk gun, which I sold right away.
Q. Was that a 9-millimeter?
A. No, sir, .357.
Q. The .38 you were familiar with, had you trained with that?
A. Yes, sir. We took training with the man that ran the security outfit. He was a police officer, so he tried to, you know, give us the best training he could. We had to watch the films and get certified and all that. We worked in condominiums and hospitals with the weapon.
Q. How many rounds had you fired before in your life?
A. Only — before the crime, only in training, probably ten, twenty.
Q. You were familiar with what was going to happen; you had fired at a target?
A. Yes.
Q. How far away were you when you fired the shots?
A. The night of the crime?
Q. The night of the crime.
A. Ten, fifteen feet.
Q. You knew the devastation?
A. Absolutely.
Q. Did you ever think of the consequences?
A. Um, I knew death would occur. I knew that I was probably not going to be killed. Did I see the whole range of consequences? No.
Q. Who was with Mr. Lennon when this occurred?
A. His wife.
Q. Yoko Ono?
A. Yes. She came out of the car first, and then he followed.
Q. Mm hmm. Did you ever consider the effect on his family and friends when you did this?
A. No.
Q. You never considered it?
A. No, sir.
Q. In the two to three months you described, did you ever give any consideration as to what the impact on a person would be?
A. No.
Q. Now when you brought it back the second time, where did you stay?
A. Um, probably at the Sheraton, at the Sheraton.
Q. Where did you get the money? You mentioned selling a painting for all of this.
A. I had a Norman Rockwell lithograph that I sold.
Q. Do you know for how much?
A. About seventy-five hundred.
Q. Commissioner Vizzie talked a little bit about programs. We understand and we see the limitations that you have being in the Special Housing Unit for security reasons. I'm interested in if you have completed any comprehensive violence program in the New York prison system, for example ART.
A. No.
Q. Did you think you could benefit from a program like that?
A. Sure. I tried to get down on the Cephas program years ago then or, a regular basis, but they wouldn't let me.
Q. Now you talked about being swept up the day or near the time of the crime, that you kind of had to go through it, but you — I think you said you thought God told you twice no?
A. Earlier, months before he did.
Q. Months before?
A. Mm hmm. I felt it in my heart, and I knew it to he true, and I basically said no.
Q. Now you described [redacted] that being a part of your [redacted].
A. It was by the defense attorneys.
Q. I know some [redacted]. Did you have those type of things occur?
A. No. Probably right toward the end, I heard a small voice, but I wasn't hearing voices.
Q. What small voice did you hear?
A. Just do it.
Q. Mm hmm. So you heard a small voice telling you to do it is what you are saying?
A. Mm hmm.
Q. Who was that voice do you think?
A. Probably something very evil, but I did it.
Q. We understand that you did it.
A. I didn't do it because voices told me to do it. That was a misunderstanding from the very beginning, and that's not true.
Q. But I'm, you know, just going by what you are telling me here today.
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Do you hear voices now?
A. No, sir.
Q. When was the last time you did?
A. That was it. it wasn't anything audibly. I mean, that was it.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER DOYLE:
Q. I just want a follow up. How did you get your list of people you were considering killing?
A. I just thought about it in my head and came up with the list.
Q. And you gave us a few names. Was that everyone That was on the list?
A. I think there were two or three others.
Q. How did those people come to your mind?
A. I just thought about them. [redacted] was very famous at the time [redacted]. [redacted] is a very famous [redacted], I'd seen some of [redacted] that type of thing.
Q. What made you upset about these people?
A. As I said, I just perceived vanity, and that angered me in my very unglamorous life, and I got jealous.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER SMITH:
Q. How could we have confidence that you wouldn't — there's famous people. How could we have confidence this would not be repeated; do you have any thought on that?
A. Well,I — I don't feel — I'm not that type of person any more. I — I'm closer to the Lord. I don't think of famous people as quote/unquote famous people any more. I see them as people. I didn't see John Lennon as a person, and now I do, and I think I'm over that vanity.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER DOYLE:
Q. So it was a vanity for you as well?
A. Absolutely.
Q. You wanted attention?
A. Sure.
Q. Widespread public attention?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Since you've been incarcerated, have you done anything to further that, obtaining widespread attention?
A. In 1988 I gave a People, interview, which I regret. And in connection with this book that was written about me, I did two interviews, one with Larry King and one with Barbara Walters. Other than that, I've consistently, especially the last ten years, denied any press requests.
Q. How about within the last few months?
A. [redacted] asked me to do an interview for the book, for the foreword to the book. And I at first didn't want to, and then I prayed about it, and I thought to myself — and I really feel this way, I really feel the book is a project from the Lord — so I said, I really don't want to do this, Lord, but it's your project, I'll do what you want me to do. And I felt peace in my heart, and I agreed to do the interview, which was three hours. And he then asked me to do an interview with Court TV, which I said no. He asked me if I could release some of the tapes to Court TV. Again, I felt funny about that, and I prayed about it, and I said okay. And I got permission to do that. And I'd like to say they took a lot of that out of context, but that's okay. But other than that, nothing. And I — believe me, I've gotten everything from everywhere, and it doesn't interest me at all. But when I talked with Jack downstairs here, not in this room, but on this floor, those three hours were great because I was able to really it was like a confession almost. I was able to accept my responsibility in this probably for the first real time, and I told him I didn't really deserve anything, that this was a serious crime, and when a person does something like that, it's not good, and there's nothing that can be done to make up for it. And that was the bulk of the interview, and that got missed totally, and they said — if you don't mind me speaking on and on — they said that I said that Mr. Lennon would want me free, and I'd like to clear that up. Again, the bulk of the interview was, once you take a life, that's it. I don't even deserve to be here. I'd like to give you a transcript of that interview if you want it. But so that was the bulk of it. And toward the, end, he asked me, what do you think John Lennon would do? And I thought about it for a minute, and I answered honestly — maybe I shouldn't have said that, maybe it wasn't my right to speak my own crime victim's words, but I did — and I answered honestly, that was a no-holds-barred kind of thing, and I just said that I feel he was a liberal and that he would have cared and that he probably would want to see me released. But I'd like to say now I'm not a liberal. I'm a conservative, and I believe once you take a person's life, there's no way you can make up for that. Period. And I'm lucky to be alive. So that was missed in that interview. That went all over saying that — trying to make it sound like I'm using Mr. Lennon's, my supposed feeling of what he thinks, to try to get out. And that's not what happened. That's not true. And there were other quotes in there saying, you know, gee, I'm forty-five years old, I'm living and I'm breathing. I was contrasting the fact that Mr. Lennon isn't breathing any more, and I'm still alive, and I've lived five years longer than he did, and that's not right. And I apologize to Mrs. Lennon for this. I'm on a roll here. I don't know if you want to stop me.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER VIZZIE:
Q. Let me ask you this. In conjunction to what you've talked about with us just now, about you being alive and Mr. Lennon not being, you are well aware, of course, there are many, many people who are very upset with what you've done?
A. Rightly so.
Q. Have you given thought to your own safety if released, and do you have a concern about that?
A. I've given thought to it. I — once again, I feel that God would protect me if I was ever let go, and I believe he kept the lions' mouths shut in Daniel's den. And I think he can do the same for me if he so chooses, and I would leave most of that up to him. I would still be practical. I wouldn't work at McDonald's, but I would leave most of that up to him. I would watch myself and that kind of thing, but 1 have given it thought.

COMMISSIONER VIZZIE: Okay. Commissioners, do you have any further questions?

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER SMITH:
Q. Mr. Chapman, you mentioned a little bit about some interview I'm not familiar with. I can tell you, you understand that we operate under laws and statutes?
A. Yes,sir.
Q. And our concern — we've — we've looked through the record carefully. We are certainly going to consider what you told us, but I think it's important to understand that's, you know, the information that we look at. In terms of you're saying that you're going on and on, that's what this is. This is your opportunity to do so.
A. Well, I thought maybe you'd heard that, and I wanted to straighten it out because —
Q. Well, it's —
A. —you know how they do. That's not what I meant by that at all.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER DOYLE:
Q. Are there any other areas you feel you should straighten out, as you put it, any false perceptions that you feel should he straightened out for this panel?
A. Yes, sir. I don't think I'm a celebrity. A chimpanzee could have done what I did.
Q. Being a chimpanzee — that doesn't mean you are a chimpanzee or not a chimpanzee.
A. What I mean is there was no skill in what I did, and anyone could have done this. Anyone could have pulled the trigger, and I'm nobody special, and I just wish it was that way. Unfortunately it's not, but I do wish I was a big nobody again. That's true. I wish this had never happened.
Q. In terms of this, is there anything else that you do you feel as though there's any distortions or misperceptions you need to straighten out?
A. Yes, sir. This whole thing since Monday the 25th, all of the stuff is like, he is asking to be free. I'm not asking you to let me free. I don't think I've got that right. I'm really straight on, I took a life, I take the responsibility. If you wanted to set me free, that's up to you. I don't have a right to ask you that, and I'm not going to. And what happened — I'm sorry — what happened last week was upsetting because it's exactly — that's the opposite of what I meant in that interview, and it gave the impression that, you know, I'm playing my violin. I don't have a violin. I don't want one. Um, I'm not asking for anything. I'm lucky to be sitting here alive, and I really mean that. And —

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER VIZZIE:
Q. Mr. Chapman, not only did you take the life of a celebrity, unprovoked, with no cause whatsoever, but you also took the life of someone who was a husband and a father of two children.
A. Yes, sir.
Q. And I just hope you've given ample thought to what it was.
A. I have, sir.
COMMISSIONER VIZZIE: I'm asking one more time if there are any more questions.
COMMISSIONER DOYLE: No questions.
COMMISSIONER SMITH: I have nothing further.

EXAMINATION BY COMMISSIONER VIZZIE:
Q. Mr. Chapman, anything else you'd like to add to the interview, something we haven't discussed already perhaps?
A. Yes. Do I have a moment to speak or —
Q. Of course.
A. I want to say what I said in the parole report that Mr. Shedler wrote down is I don't have a right to be here. I gave up that right on the night of December 8th when I willingly took John Lennon's life. I — what I did was despicable, as I said in the report, and I don't feel it's up to me to ask to he let out. Again, I believe that once you take a person's life, that's it. And I will not appeal any decision you have. If it's a decision to continue me here in the prison, I will not appeal it, and I never will. I'd like the opportunity to apologize to Mrs. Lennon. I've thought about what it's like in her mind to be there that night, to see the blood, hear the screams, to be up all night with the Beatle music playing through her apartment window. I would like to straighten out one other thing about that. I have heard — I don't know if it's true or not —I've heard that she feels I would harm her and her children. That's absolutely not true. I never had that thought, and I would not harm her or her children. And I'm not saying that to try to get cut. I'm saying that's the truth. I don't have that in me any more, and it's gone, but unfortunately, it involved a person. And there's something else I want to say. I feel that I see John Lennon now as not a celebrity. I did then. I saw him as a cardboard cutout on an album cover. I was very young and stupid, and you get caught up in the media and the records and the music. And now I -- I've come to grips with the fact that John Lennon was a person. This has nothing to do with being a Beatle or a celebrity or famous. He was breathing, and I knocked him right off his feet, and I don't feel because of that I have any right to be standing on my feet here, you know, asking for anything. I don't have a leg to stand on because I took his right out from under him, and he bled to death. And I'm sorry that that occurred. And I want to talk about Mrs. Lennon again. I can't imagine her pain. I can't feel it. I've tried to think what it would be like if someone harmed my family, and there's just no way to make up for that, and if I have to stay in prison the rest of my life for that one person's pain, everybody else to the side for a second, just that one person's pain, I will. I saw an article in Newsweek about three months ago. I don't know how old it was. You know, it was fairly recent, and I read it, and she was talking, she was quoted, so I assumed it was accurate. And she said on that night that she was shaking uncontrollably. And I think for the first time I really realized, you know, the pain that I caused. I mean, here's a person that can't control their body, and that really hit home. And at that point what I was going to do is, I didn't even want to come down to the board, and that's the truth, and.that I wasn't going to fill out that paperwork. I barely got in to Mr. Shedler, and I filled it out to follow procedure because you have a right to talk to me. You have a right to know what happened. We're accountable to the people, to talk. So that's why I'm here, but I originally wasn't even going to come here after that article I read because of the shaking uncontrollably. That bothered me. And I think it really hit home. Again, I'm not saying these things for — for you to give any kind of consideration of letting me go. I'm saying that because they are real, and it happened to me, and I felt her pain then, and I can honestly say I didn't even want to feel it up until then. It's a horrible thing to, you know, realize what you've done.
Q. Mr. Chapman, your case will be given appropriate review. Commissioners Smith and Doyle and myself will discuss the matter.
A. Yes, sir.
Q. You'll get that in several days. Thank you for coming.
A. Thank you very much.



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