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Closing Arguments Expected in State v. Capobianco

Posted November 28, 2016, 01:10 AM HST Updated November 28, 2016, 01:34 PM HST
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Montage. Defense Attorney Jon Apo (left). Prosecuting Attorney Robert Rivera (right).

Montage. Defense Attorney Jon Apo (left). Prosecuting Attorney Robert Rivera (right). File photos by Wendy Osher.

Closing arguments in the State v. Capobianco case could begin as early as today, Monday, Nov. 28, 2016 in the ongoing murder trial of Steven Capobianco.

Capobianco is accused of killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend Carly “Charli” Scott and setting her vehicle on fire in February of 2014.  He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The trial left off last week on Wednesday with testimony from rebuttal witnesses, including Dr. Kanthi De Alwis, a forensic pathologist and former chief medical examiner for the City and County of Honolulu.

In her testimony De Alwis said marks on a jawbone recovered from Nuaʻailua in East Maui were consistent with a “sharp cutting instrument.”  She said, “I did not see those scoring marks consistent with scavenging  by a boar or pig in this mandible.”

Her remarks were contrary to testimony provided by Defense witness, Dr. Michael Laufer, who said the injuries were from a four legged creature, possibly a wild boar weighing 150-200 pounds or more.

The state had sought to introduce (Sorenson Forensics and FBI lab) DNA evidence related to a pair of blue jeans found over a guardrail along Hāna Highway.  During the trial, witnesses were informed that the DNA profile on that stain was Scott’s; however, the court would not allow the state to introduce evidence relating to a hair found in a pocket of the jeans.  The decision to exclude the evidence was based on timing and discovery.

Jury selection began more than six months ago; and the testimony portion of the trial began five months ago on June 27, 2016.

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Closing arguments are projected to take anywhere from a day or up until Wednesday afternoon, Nov. 30, 2016.

Charli Scott (left) courtesy photo; Steven Capobianco (right) by Wendy Osher (May 2016).

Charli Scott (left) courtesy photo; Steven Capobianco (right) by Wendy Osher (May 2016).

Case History/Background:

Steven Capobianco is standing trial for the murder of his pregnant ex-girlfriend, Carly “Charli” Scott. He is also accused of setting her vehicle on fire.

Scott was 27-years-old and five months pregnant at the time with an unborn child fathered by the defendant.  Capobianco has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In the days following Charli Scott’s disappearance, Capobianco had done an interview with police in which he said Scott had picked him up on the night of Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014, and dropped him off at his truck that he said got stuck in Keʻanae on Feb. 8, 2014.

According to the account, both headed back to Haʻikū, with Scott following Capobianco in case his vehicle broke down again.  Scott was reported missing the next night on Feb. 10, 2014, after she failed to show up for work and did not return phone calls and messages from her family members.

Wendy Osher
Wendy Osher leads the Maui Now news team. She is also the news voice of parent company, Pacific Media Group, having served more than 15 years as News Director for the company’s six Maui radio stations.

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