John Ono Lennon Assassination

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John Ono Lennon (October 9th, 1940 – December 8th, 1980) was one of the most influential musicians in history, often associated with The Beatles. On December 8th, 1980, Lennon was shot dead by Mark David Chapman in front of The Dakota, a hotel in Manhattan. It is widely believed that Chapman is insane, which promoted him to assassinate Lennon. However, conspirators believe that Lennon’s assassination was planned by the government, CIA, and/or FBI.



John Ono Lennon

John Ono Lennon was born on October 9th, 1940 in Liverpool, England. In 1960, he formed the rock and roll group, The Beatles, which went on to become one of the most influential bands in history. During the bands latter years, Lennon often wrote songs about peace and love, trying to use his music to get the public’s attention. After the group spilt in 1970, Lennon continued releasing peace songs (“Give Peace A Chance,” “Imagine,” “Working Class Hero”) in hope of ending the Vietnam War, ending feuds between countries, and government control. It is this role in politics that his death on December 8th, 1980 is official ruled as an assassination. Additionally, conspiracists believe that the government played a part in Lennon’s death because his messages of peace went against government actions at the time.

Yoko Ono

Yoko Ono was John Lennon’s wife at the time of his assassination. Although she is not prominent in conspiracy theories, there are several theories which claim she had a part in the assassination. These claims mostly come from the fact that she quickly remarried, which seems strange to conspirators.

The Event

On December 8th, 1980, John Lennon and his wife Yoko Ono stepped outside their apartment in The Dakota, heading towards a recording studio. Once they stepped outside, Lennon was approached by several people, including Mark David Chapman, asking for his autograph. Lennon and Ono returned to The Dakota at approximately 10: 50 p.m. when Lennon was shot walking to the entrance by Chapman, who had been waiting in the area. Lennon was hit with 4 bullets to his back and shoulder, all causing severe injuries. After shooting Lennon, Chapman sat down on the sidewalk and held a copy of The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger while waiting for police to arrive. When police arrived to the scene, Lennon was taken to Roosevelt Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 11: 15 pm. The police also took Chapman into custody.

Mark David Chapman

Mark David Chapman is the convicted murdered of John Lennon. After killing Lennon, Chapman sat down on the side walk and began reading J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in The Rye. When examining the book, police found in it, a note by Chapman which stated that he was Holden Caulfield while reenacting his life. This is one of the factors which led Chapman to be convicted under mentally insane. In a conspirator’s view, Chapman was trained by the government for years and brainwashed to carry out the task. Some theories even suggest that his copy of The Catcher in the Rye was used as a signal trigger.

Conspiracy Claims

Through his music, John Lennon taught a whole generation to question authority, promote peace, and think for themselves. This was directly against what the government advocated during the time period however. The government was using war in an attempt to end communism in Vietnam. Additionally, Cold War tensions were rising and there was a strong possibility that the government would enter other wars. Lennon, alone, was the only man who had the ability to draw out millions of anti-war protestors in, if he opposed those war policies. This made Lennon an obvious threat to the government, such that several FBI files were kept on him. It is documented in these files that the government tried to deport him and declare him mentally insane.

Conspirators claim that since removing Lennon from the US did not work, the government turned to programming Mark David Chapman to assassinate Lennon. They point to years in Chapman’s life when he could have been brainwashed by the government to perform this task. Around 1978, Chapman took a “long” vacation around the world. It is not known how he financed the trip and conspirators claim this was when Chapman was brainwashed. This is further supported by Chapman’s testimony in court, when he said he was trying to “resist the master “ in his head when killing Lennon (allusion to brainwashing).

Additionally, conspirators find it strange that Chapman was allowed to own a gun despite going through mental treatment earlier in his life. On top of that Chapman received a job as a security guard. To conspirators, this seems like the government supplied Chapman with a weapon, while teaching him how to shoot (by setting him up with a job as a security guard).

The end result is the tragic assassination of Lennon,a popular artist and political activist, who was silenced by the government to make sure his messages never appear again to awaken the slumbering youth.


Fenton Bresler

Fenton Bresler released Who Killed John Lennon?: A Conspiracy. In it, he claims that Chapman was not a “lone-nut,” rather programmed, through rugs and hypnosis, by the CIA to carry out the assassination. According to Bresler, Lennon was an anti-Vietnam war activist, which was against the interest of the government. As a result, he was targeted by government agencies to be assassinated. The book is not looked at seriously, as it lacks evidence to support its extraordinary claim and is based mostly on speculation.

Phil Strongman

Phil Strongman wrote John Lennon and the FBI Files, which documents the government’s secret war against Lennon. Strongman claims that once Lennon split with The Beatles, he had time to pursue political activism in Vietnam War. Researching recently released FBI files, Strongman came to the conclusion that the FBI was against Lennon’s activism and took actions such as: bugging Lennon’s apartment, trying to deport him, and trying to declare Lennon mentally insane. Conspirator use evidence such as this to support their claims that Chapman was programmed by the FBI to carry out the assassination.


The claims by conspirators are not backed by any evidence, instead they are supported only through speculation. This is also the case with Bresler's Who Killed John Lennon?: A Conspiracy, a main proponent of the conspiracy. These factors indicate that there is no reason to take the conspiracy seriously, and it should not be believed.

Cited Sources

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