On December 31, 2011, Special Agent Capano was shot while attempting to apprehend a suspect who had just conducted an armed robbery of Charlie's Family Pharmacy in Seaford, New York. This suspect was a convicted felon with numerous armed robbery arrests and convictions, and was recently paroled after serving 10 years in a New York State penitentiary.
At the time of the robbery, Special Agent Capano was off duty and a customer at the pharmacy. He confronted a suspect who was seen brandishing what appeared to be a firearm inside the store, pursued him outside of the store, and engaged him in a physical struggle in an attempt to make an apprehension. While Special Agent Capano was struggling with the suspect, an armed off-duty New York City police officer and an armed, retired Nassau County police officer responded to the scene.
During the ongoing struggle, the Nassau County officer discharged his weapon, and Special Agent Capano was struck by a bullet to his chest. He was transported to an area hospital where he was later pronounced dead. The suspect was also shot and died at the scene. A quantity of narcotics, cash, and a pellet gun were recovered at the scene.