Convicting the Innocent
DNA Exonerations Database

Anthony Capozzi

First Name Anthony
Last NameCapozzi
Year of Conviction1987
Year of Exoneration2007
Testing inculpated culpritCold Hit
State of ConvictionNew York
Trial, Bench Trial, or Guilty PleaTrial
Type of CrimeRape
Death SentenceNo
Gender of ExonereeMale
Race of exonereeWhite
Description / Quotes from Testimony Concerning Defense

● Defense argued innocence, with counsel saying in the opening statement: “He’s a victim of it absolutely without question, mistaken identity."

Did the defendant testify at trial?No
Types of evidence at trial
  • Eyewitness
Identity of eyewitness
  • Intraracial Identificaiton
  • Victim
Multiple eyewitnesses4
Lineup Procedures
  • Lineup
Suggestive Procedures

Yes ● Suggestive line-ups – defendant was the only person without facial hair and the shortest in lineup, and in second lineup, only one with short cropped hair

Unreliable Identification?

Yes ● Initial nonidentification ● Initially uncertain of i.d. – victim “unsure" and identified a filler initially – one victim could not see attacker’s face ● Discrepancies – included facial hair, weight, age, acne and failure to mention prominent scar on forehead

Quotes from testimony #2

One victim “just saw the outline of his body” and not his face Q: Did you feel that, whether you were rushed or not, that you had to put a number down? A: Yes I did. Q: As I understand it, you put a number down on the sheet supplied to you by the police officer conducting the lineup. A: Yes I did. Q: What else did you put down? A: I put down I was unsure." Q: And you observed at the time, did you not, that Anthony, the person that you saw in the lineup and the person that you pointed to and picked out in the second lineup, was heavier or fatter I think is the word you used, fatter than the person who did this thing to you in December of 1983, right? A: Yes.

Highest level reachedAppeal
Claims Raised During All Appeals and Postconviction
  • Jackson Claim
  • Jury Instructions
  • State Law Evidence Claim
  • Suggestive Eyewitness Identification
Citations to judicial opinions

People v. Capozzi, 152 A.D.2d 985 (N.Y.App.Div. 4 Dept., 1989)

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