The man responsible for murdering John Lennon 31 years ago has been transferred to a new prison, officials say. He was moved from Attica to the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden. Mark David Chapman was moved on Tuesday, but officials have refused to explain why the move was necessary.
Chapman shot and killed the Beatles member in 1980, outside his home in Manhattan. The death of Lennon brought worldwide attention and an outpour of mourning for the young star. Chapman pled guilty to the murder and received a sentence of 20 years to life in prison.
In 2000, Chapman released a book entitled "Let Me Take You Down," which describes his upbringing and crime. He gave an interview to CNN's Larry King in which he talked about the shooting of Lennon.
"It was me, Larry, and I accept full responsibility for what I did," he said pointedly.
"I've seen places where I'm blaming the devil, and I hope that that isn't kept going after this interview. I'm not blaming the devil, I'm blaming myself. But in the major sense, it wasn't me, because I'm better now. I'm normal … but I'm not the same person in the major sense, because back then I was lost and I didn't know who I was," Chapman told King.
When asked if he had any regret for his action, Chapman assured King that he definitely did.
"I have regrets. I'm sorry for what I did. I realize now that I really ended a man's life. Then, he was an album cover to me. He didn't exist, even when I met him earlier that day when he signed the album for me, which he did very graciously.
"If that didn't register that he was a human being, then I wasn't perceiving him as such. I just saw him as a two-dimensional celebrity with no real feelings. What happened before the shooting, before I pulled the trigger and after were two different scenes in my mind," he explained.
Chapman also explained that part of his transformation between that time 31 years ago and 2000 is that he found the Lord.
"I've walked in the power of the Lord now for a number of years," he told King. "Through my life, off and on, I have struggled with different things, as we all do, and at those times I would turn to the Lord. The night of the death of John Lennon I was far from him."
"Today I'm different. I read the Bible, I pray and I walk with him. He forgives me. He doesn't condone what I did … but he forgives me and he hears me and he listens to me, and he is the one, all these years, that has brought me out of the abyss," Chapman added.
Chapman has been up for parole six times, the most recent in September 2010, and been denied all those times. He will be eligible once again in August 2012.