Chapman killed Lennon because he was “angry and jealous” of the way the Beatle lived and sought “fame” for himself, according to the transcripts.
“At the time, I thought he had all that money, that he lives in this beautiful apartment and that he likes music representing a more careful lifestyle, a more generous lifestyle,” Chapman said. parole board members. “It made me angry and jealous for the way I was living back then. There was jealousy in that. ”
Lennon died on December 8, 1980 after Chapman shot him outside his apartment building on the Upper West Side, hours after Lennon autographed an album.
When asked if anything in that thinking has changed over the past 40 years of his incarceration as to why he shot Lennon, Chapman said it boiled down to fame.
“It was just self-glory, period,” Chapman said. “It was nothing more than that. It boiled down to that. There are no excuses.
Chapman said he hadn’t bought the gun for more than three months before the shooting. He left his wife in Hawaii to come to New York, telling her he needed to meet again.
He had a list of three other potential targets in case Lennon didn’t work.
“I came up with all the famous people I could,” says the transcript.
One of the commissioners said, “You call it glory and some might call it infamy,” to which Chapman replied, “Infamy brings glory.”
This statement, it seems, sealed Chapman’s fate.
“During the interview, you said that you committed this murder to seek glory. You said “infamy brings you glory,” “said the panel’s decision denying parole. “This panel finds your statement disturbing. Your actions represented a perverse act. The fact that today, almost 40 years later, you can still talk about what you did as something that felt positive to you and that in your mind gave you “glory” back then , is worrying for this panel. ”
Had he been released, Chapman, who in prison became a devoted Christian, pledged to become an evangelist.
“Look how far down I have come, but yet God still loves me and cares about me and has given me purpose and meaning in my life. ”
Chapman concluded his plea with a long soliloquy and an apology to Yoko Ono.
“I just want her to know that she knows her husband like no one else and that she knows the kind of man he was. I did not do it. I just judged him from a book and murdered him. It was in a book. He was extremely famous. I didn’t kill him because of his character or the kind of man he was. He was a father. He was an icon. He was someone who was talking about things we can now talk about and that’s great. ” he said.
Chapman continued, “In the ’60s when you said the things he said, you were a creep. I remember I was 20 and being aware of the times and the press and the presidency and all that and what they look like. on anti-war people. Now we realize that Vietnam was a horrible mistake. It has to go and you put your life on the line back when you felt like this. He was the kind of man he was. I murdered him, to use your word earlier, because he was very, very, very famous and that’s the only reason and I was very, very, very, very seeking self-glory, very selfish. I want to add that and underline it greatly. an extremely selfish act. I’m sorry for the pain I caused her. I think about it all the time. ”
Julia Jacobo of ABC News contributed to this report.