Lillo Brancato, Jr. is perhaps best known for his role of "Calogero Anello," in Robert De Niro’s 1993 directorial debut, A Bronx Tale. He also played Mathew Bevilaqua, a young mobster on The Sopranos.
In December 2005, Brancato was charged with second-degree murder for his role in a burglary in the Bronx. Authorities say an off-duty police officer, Daniel Enchautegui, confronted two burglars and was killed in a shootout.
Enchautegui confronted Brancato, and his accomplice, 48-year-old Steven Armento, outside at a vacant house located at 3119 Arnow Place, next to his own, after hearing glass break. While Enchautegui waited for backup, a gunfight erupted.
Enchautegui was shot and brought to the hospital where he died. Police arrested Brancato and Armento in the vicinity, both with multiple gunshot wounds and in critical condition. Armento, who is the father of Brancato’s girlfriend Stefanie, was arraigned on first-degree murder, for which he was convicted on October 30, 2008. Armento was later sentenced to life in prison without parole.
Brancato was arraigned for second-degree murder, his trial began on November 17, 2008.
He was found not guilty of murder on December 22, 2008. He was, however, convicted of 1st-degree attempted burglary and sentenced on January 9, 2009 to 10 years in prison.
From the final scene of A Bronx Tale…
"Sonny and my father always said that when I get older I would understand. Well, I finally did. I learned something from these two men.
I learned to give love and get love unconditionally. You just have to accept people for what they are. And I learned the greatest gift of all…the saddest thing in life is wasted talent, and the choices that you make will shape your life forever. But you can ask anybody from my neighborhood, and they’ll just tell you…this is just another Bronx tale."
I guess Brancato didn’t pay attention to those words he spoke in this final scene of A Bronx Tale.
What a waste of talent.