Retired NYPD Officer to Sell Letters from John Lennon’s Killer


A look inside the mind of John Lennon’s killer goes on sale today.

Mark David Chapman, the man who infamously murdered former Beatle John Lennon on December, 1980, wrote a series of letters to his arresting NYPD officer Stephen Spiro in the years following the incident. Spiro, now 66-years old and retired, has decided to sell the letters for $75,000 on the historical memorabilia site, Moments in Time.

Spiro and Chapman spent five hours together upon the killer’s arrest, in which time Chapman claims to have felt close to the officer. Between January and May 1983, Chapman sent typed letters to Spiro’s
home, asking to become friends with him and attempting to explain his motivations to kill Lennon via the novel The Catcher in The Rye. In an interview with CNN, Spiro revealed that Chapman had a hit-list of people he wanted to kill — including Jackie Onassis and Walter Cronkite — that he also alludes to in his letters.

Chapman, who has been denied parole a total of 7 times, is serving a 20-years-to-life sentence at the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden, NY. Spiro plans to donate some of the letter’s earnings to charity, but also expressed that he hoped the letters would work against Chapman ever being freed.

Check out an excerpt from one of Chapman’s letters below:

March 10, 1983

“… You mentioned your family. Tell me about your children. How about a photo, too?

“Have you read The Catcher in the Rye yet? I know this will help you to further understand …

“I will let you decide whether Mr. Lennon was a phony or not. His words shoot his life-purpose full of holes. If you dig deep — and not idolize — it is all there. Yes, Lennon was a phony of highest degree but there were others who could — and would — have served the same purpose. I believe the DA has these names.”