Former Assistant DA Charged

By Bob Keeler

November 5, 2008

Anthony Cappuccio, a former Bucks County assistant district attorney and church youth group leader, is accused of corruption of minors, endangering the welfare of children and related charges.

Charges were filed Oct. 30 against the 31-year-old Hilltown resident.

Cappuccio had a consensual sexual affair with a teenage boy and provided alcohol to and smoked marijuana with that youth and others from the youth group at First United Methodist Church, Perkasie, investigators say. Cappuccio was a youth group leader there until he resigned at the end of June, giving family needs as the reason, according to information from the church.

Cappuccio and the teenager, now 17, were found partially undressed in the reclined front seats of Cappuccio's car in a Route 309 shopping center parking lot in Richland Township about 11:59 p.m. Sept. 5, according to court papers.

Because of Cappuccio's job as a Bucks County assistant district attorney, from which he resigned after the Sept. 5 incident, the case was investigated by the state attorney general's office.

Cappuccio has admitted to providing alcohol to and smoking marijuana with the teenage boy and two others at concerts at Tower Theater in Upper Darby, the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia and Sovereign Center in Reading, and of having an "emotional and sexual relationship" with the Montgomery County youth, according to court papers.

Louis Busico, Cappuccio's attorney, did not return a call for comment.

In 2005, members of the youth group talked about going to concerts and Cappuccio, who was youth group leader, agreed to be a chaperone and to provide transportation, the youth told investigators.

The youth was 15 in March 2007 when Cappuccio took money from him and a 17-year-old and bought them rum and cokes at a concert, according to court papers.

At later concerts, Cappuccio allegedly again provided alcohol and smoked marijuana with the youths.

In April of this year, when the youth was 16, he and Cappuccio discussed having feelings toward each other, followed by a kiss in May outside a Hilltown restaurant the two went to after a youth fellowship meeting, the youth told investigators.

Between May and September, he said, the two had sex at least once a week, with the incidents taking place in their vehicles or homes, according to court papers. After the Sept. 5 incident, the two met again and had sexual contact on Sept. 15, according to court papers.

Cappuccio gave the youth a cell phone and the two had phone conversations, text and Internet communication, investigators said.

None of the youths is identified by name in the criminal complaint. The youth with whom Cappuccio allegedly had an affair is identified as Victim #1.

"Victim #1's mother described how, at the time, she was happy Cappuccio became her son's friend and role model during his teenage years. Victim #1's parents said they trusted Cappuccio with their son due to his employment as an attorney in the district attorney's office and his position as a church youth group leader. Victim #1's parents said they were never concerned that their son was out at concerts, and other events, at all hours of the night because he was with Cappuccio," investigators wrote in the criminal complaint.

Similarly, "Victim #2's mother said she met Cappuccio a few times and often spoke with him by phone prior to her son attending events with Cappuccio" and "Victim #3's mother said she met Cappuccio and his wife a few times and trusted him because of his position as a youth group leader."

Cappuccio was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Robert Roth in Richland.

Following church guidelines, a criminal record and child abuse background check were done for Cappuccio in order for him to become a youth leader, according to a statement from First United Methodist Church.

"The well-being of all young people is foremost here," the statement said.

"The First United Methodist Church will keep the Cappuccio family in our prayers and will offer spiritual care to them in this difficult time. First United Methodist Church of Perkasie will also offer pastoral support and prayer to the youth of our church for whom Mr. Cappuccio was formerly a volunteer worker," the statement said.


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