The Louisiana artist has been in prison for 21 years for a crime he claims he did not commit.
Mark David Chapman, 65, is serving a 20-years-to-life sentence for the 1980 murder of the legendary Beatle.
"When I thought about the issue, I was thinking of prisoners in general, not the prisoner whose name appeared on the letter from the parole board."
Chapman “executed the murder of a world-famous person for no reason other than to gain notoriety,” New York’s parole board said in its decision.
In prison for 27 years, Robert Counts (known then as Ishmael Shamsid-din) read Shakespeare and Robert Frost, Einstein, Malcolm X and the Koran. He started to write poems -- including one to his parole board, entitled "if only".
Isn't it up to God to forgive the truly horrible, like members of the Manson Family? Should we forgive all mass-murderers? Must we go that far?