From The “I’d Hate To Be This Guy’s Lawyer” File


A Kansas man on trial for murder has an interesting tattoo: 

A Kansas man facing first-degree murder charges is trying to convince the government to let him do something about his giant “MURDER” neck tattoo before the trial begins.

The first-degree murder case against Jeffrey Chapman is scheduled to begin next week. Prosecutors say Chapman killed a man in 2011, leaving the body behind in a roadside ditch for hunters to discover.

According to the AP, Chapman’s defense attorney is now seeking to have the state bring in a tattoo artist to obscure or remove the giant mirror-image “MURDER” tag. Prosecutors say no, pointing to the fact that Kansas tattoo artists can only work in licensed facilities, a list that does not include jail cells.

Some unsolicited legal advice. First, don’t have “Murder” tattooed on your neck, or any other part of your body. Second, don’t murder people.

FILED UNDER: Crime, Law and the Courts,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Tillman says:

    It’s not enough to tattoo murder in giant bold font on your neck. No. You have to invert it so you can read it in the mirror while you brush your teeth.

  2. Franklin says:

    I’m trying to think what they could change it to in order to help out the defense. “MARTYR” would still require a lot of tattoo work, I think.

  3. KansasMom says:

    Nothing good comes from Kansas making the national news. Ever.

  4. rodney dill says:

    Objects in mirror are dumber than they appear.

  5. Wouldn’t the simplest way to solve the problem be to let him wear a turtleneck or a turtleneck-style dickey under his dress shirt?

  6. John Peabody says:

    Maybe he’s a grammer nazi…maybe he likes to murder split infinitives.

  7. OzarkHillbilly says:

    First, don’t have “Murder” tattooed on your neck, or any other part of your body. Second, don’t murder people.

    Words to live by….

  8. bill says:

    @Timothy Watson: good point, and hopefully the jury won’t know what the “tear” tattoo means!

  9. @bill: That’s his problem, not exactly anything they do with that other than cover it with a band-aid or something similar.

  10. beth says:

    One word – Sharpies!

  11. Franklin says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: It’s certainly decent for free advice, but I would suggest switching the order.

  12. rudderpedals says:

    MURDER -> MORDOR gets points from Tolkien fans on the jury

  13. Tillman says:

    @Tillman: Also, the neck? That’s chickening out. Tattoo it on your forehead, that’ll show some foolishness guts.

  14. al-Ameda says:

    I recommend a remote (uninhabited) island in the South Pacific.
    We can leave him there.

  15. Matt says:

    Guess it’s time for plan B? Lots of makeup and a turtleneck?

  16. Barry says:

    @rodney dill: “Objects in mirror are dumber than they appear. ”

    That’s great!