Wednesday December 8, 2010 marks the 30th anniversary of the murder of John Lennon.

Mark David Chapman gunned down John Lennon outside his home at the Dakota building in New York after John and Yoko had left a recording session.

The former Beatle had just returned to public profile after 5 years in self-exile looking after his son Sean. He had just released his first album in 5 years, ‘Double Fantasy’ and was having his first hit song in years with ‘(Just Like) Starting Over’.

Mark David Chapman was 25 years old when he shot Lennon. He had planned to murder John in October 1980 and had gone to the Dakota to do it then, and returned again in November but changed his mind. On December 6, 1980, he returned to New York and this time went through with the murder.

On the morning of December 8, he went to Lennon’s home once again and waited with other fans for a glimpse or an autograph. Distracted at one point, he missed Lennon leave the building.

At 5pm, Lennon and Ono once again left the building and Chapman was waiting with a copy of ‘Double Fantasy’ for John to sign. Lennon signed the album for who would hours later become his assassination.

At 10:49pm, the Lennon’s returned from The Record Plant were they had just recorded Ono’s ‘Walking On Thin Ice’. As they passed the entrance to the building, Chapman pulled out his gun and shot Lennon five times. John was pronounced dead at 11:07pm.

Chapman was charged with second-degree murder. He has been an inmate of Attica Correctional Facility since 1981.

Chapman was last denied parole on September 7, 2010 with a panel ruling his release would be “incompatible with the welfare of the community’.

R.I.P. John Winston Lennon