Carly Scott murder trial ends with guilty verdict for Steven Capobianco
A thrilling gasp rocked a standing courtroom Wednesday as one of Maui’s longest and most sinister trials ended with a unanimous guilty verdict against Steven Capobianco for the murder of Carly “Charli” Scott and the burning of his truck in February 2014. C ‘was as if Scott’s family and friends had held their collective breaths of the past two years as the case went through the court system, exploded in relief and tears when they realized their hopes had come true. materialized.
Such a verdict had seemed unlikely earlier in the month, when the jury told Judge Joseph Cardoza on December 13 that he had taken three votes and was unable to make a decision because “we are too divided”. What happened in the jury room in the days that followed will not be known until the final part of the trial is over to determine the severity of Capobianco’s sentence.
As the gallery of the fourth-floor courtroom awaited the verdict, the accused sat impassively – as he did for most of the seven-month trial – with some plucking their fingers the only sign nervousness. At the guilty verdict, he bowed his head and his aunt quickly left the courtroom. Her grandmother, her only supporting presence for most of the trial, was sitting pale and red-eyed – perhaps the only person in the courtroom not celebrating the jury’s conclusion.
Scott, who was five months pregnant, went missing on February 9, 2014. At the time, Capobianco told police she took him to pick up his broken truck about three miles after Keanae and followed him to Haiku, the last place he had seen her. . None of this was true: Capobianco’s truck was never broken down, and Scott’s clothes, a few bone fragments and a fly-covered blanket were found in Nuaailua Bay several days later. .
Despite this “big lie”, as his defense attorney described it (suggesting that the two had instead led to drug trafficking), the lack of hard evidence against Capobianco made the prosecution’s case difficult and its way to a long conclusion. The jury screening has started 23 May. Since then, some 59 days of testimony have been heard, 76 witnesses have been called and 450 pieces of evidence presented. The only DNA evidence – a lock of hair matching Capobianco found in the pocket of Scott’s blood-stained jeans – was never presented as evidence because the results were not provided to the defense in a timely manner .
After the brief hiccup in their 15-day deliberation, jurors were stoic during the verdict and firmly upheld their decision when questioned individually at the defense’s request.
They are not yet finished. Today, the court resumes to present testimony in support of a “heightened sentence”, due to the “heinous” nature of the crime. It is expected to take from two hours to a day.
Courtesy photo Find Charli Scott’s Facebook page