Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

NYC man exonerated for teen’s 2013 shooting death is arrested for attempted murder

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun9,2024

NEW YORK (TCD) — A 24-year-old Brooklyn man who was exonerated for the 2013 death of a 14-year-old honors student was indicted along with another suspect for allegedly playing a role in the shooting death of a 19-year-old.

The Queens District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday, May 21, that Shamel Capers was charged with attempted second-degree murder, four counts of criminal possession of a weapon, and first-degree reckless endangerment in connection with the fatal shooting of Joshua Taylor. Capers’ suspected co-conspirator, Dante Hunter, was indicted on the same crimes, except he is being charged with second-degree murder.

According to the statement, on July 23, 2023, at 3:17 a.m., Taylor and several other people were standing in front of a building on Metropolitan Avenue when one of Taylor’s friends reportedly threw a drink near Capers and his friend. Capers and his friend allegedly started arguing with Taylor and his group, and Hunter reportedly joined in with Capers. The dispute “escalated into a four-way shootout,” and Hunter allegedly took out his gun first.

Taylor, who was caught in the crossfire, got shot in the chest. He was transported to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced deceased.

New York Police Department officers at the scene recovered more than two dozen 9 mm shell casings in the area. Evidence reportedly showed Hunter shot the fatal round.

Investigators identified Capers as a suspect through credit card records and surveillance footage. Hunter was reportedly already in custody for a parole violation at the time of the indictment, and Capers was arrested in New Jersey. He will be extradited back to New York City.

Capers was released from prison two years ago when District Attorney Melinda Katz vacated his murder conviction for the May 18, 2013, shooting of D’Aja Robinson. Robinson was on the bus coming home from a friend’s birthday party when she was struck by crossfire in a “gang-related dispute.”

Detectives arrested gang member Kevin McClinton for murder after a witness said he fired “all 10 shots.” Another gang member, Lael Jappa, reportedly implicated Capers in exchange for a sentence reduction on other felony charges. That witness reportedly testified at Capers’ trial and said he saw Capers fire the gun. Katz said Capers’ conviction was “largely based on Jappa’s eyewitness account.” He was sentenced to 15 years to life.

However, Jappa reportedly admitted in recorded phone calls that he gave false testimony. Capers was 15 years old when he was sentenced, and he served eight years behind bars before he was freed.

WPIX-TV reports Capers’ mother said in a statement, “A rush to judgment led to his previous wrongful conviction for a crime he did not commit resulting in his unjust imprisonment for over eight years, beginning when he was just a teenager. History is tragically repeating itself. Shamel intends to vigorously defend himself in court and I pray he is given a fair chance this time to clear his name.”

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “NYC man exonerated for teen’s 2013 shooting death is arrested for attempted murder”
  1. Was there any prior history between Capers and Taylor’s group, or was this incident completely random?

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