'Sopranos' Actor Cleared of Murder in NYPD Death

By: AP
By: AP

NEW YORK – A former "Sopranos" actor has been cleared of second-degree murder in the 2005 shooting death of an off-duty policeman.

Lillo Brancato was convicted of a lesser charge of attempted burglary. He faces a minimum of three years in prison on that count, but the former actor could get credit for time served because he has been behind bars about that long.

Prosecutors say Brancato and his accomplice Steven Armento broke into a basement apartment to steal prescription drugs after a night of drinking at a strip club. Officer Daniel Enchautegui (En-chow-TAY'-gee), who lived next door, came out to investigate.

Armento blasted the 28-year-old officer with his .357 Magnum, hitting him in the heart. The dying officer fired back, wounding both men. Armento was convicted earlier this year of first-degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison without parole.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

NEW YORK (AP) — Deliberations have resumed in the trial of a former "Sopranos" actor accused in the shooting death of an off-duty New York City police officer.

The Bronx jury on Monday began weighing murder charges against Lillo Brancato, who played a wannabe mobster on "The Sopranos."

The jury last deliberated on Friday, a day after announcing it was deadlocked 11-1.

Prosecutors say Brancato and an accomplice broke into a Bronx apartment next to the home of Officer Daniel Enchautegui (En-chow-TAY'-gee) in December 2005. When the officer came to investigate, the accomplice shot him in the heart.

Brancato has pleaded not guilty. He got his big break playing opposite Robert De Niro in the 1993 film "A Bronx Tale."


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