In July 2022, Marjorie Nichole (Nikki) Cappello a former Huntsville, Alabama nurse was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of her husband. Her second appeal, this past week, was denied.
On March 17th, Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals’ Judge Kellum ruled to uphold the conviction after the second appeal was denied. According to reports, Cappello’s lawyers requested a new trial due to insufficient evidence.
Investigation and Trial
After a four-day trial, Madison County Circuit Court Judge Alan Mann sentenced Cappello to life in prison with time served for the murder of James (Jim) Cappello. James, a private investigator, was reported missing by friends and family after he had not been at work for several days.
Huntsville Police found James dead in his garage after obtaining a search warrant. According to reports, Nikki refused to let police into the home. After an autopsy, it was determined that Jame was poisoned with insulin. He was not a diabetic.
Upon further investigation, police found insulin needles and syringes inside the Cappello home. Nikki, at the time of her death, was working as a nurse. It was found that she stole the vials of insulin from her place of employment.
During the initial trial, the jury of six men and eight women deliberated for a little over 30 minutes. 15 witnesses were called, none for the defense. Crystal Henderson, Nikki’s friend, testified that Nikki confessed to killing her husband with insulin and she had placed the body in the garage.
Overwhelming evidence was presented to the jury including a photo of a muddy shovel, muddy women’s shoes, and a shallow grave in the backyard.
“Will there ever be complete closure?” said James Cappello, the deceased’s father. “I mean one part of it is over. The other, you’ve got to heal from that. He’ll never be forgotten.”
“We don’t know why, we still don’t know why,” he added. “There are questions you want to get answers and all we have is ‘she’s guilty, she’s going to jail’ but you know, no why.”
The first appeal was denied in August 2022 after her team filed an appeal notice again arguing that the prosecution failed to submit sufficient evidence. “It feels good to hear her motion was denied and her conviction will continue to be upheld,” Jim’s sister Jamie Weast said. “She will remain behind bars where she belongs.”
Image: Second Appeal Documents
A civil lawsuit is pending. Will League, a Huntsville civil attorney, filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Cappellos’ daughter, Riley. “Any proceeds we recover from Nikki or any other defendant who was negligent in this matter, all those proceeds would go to help Riley, his child, which he would want,” League said.
The couple’s daughter is currently being carried for by Jim Cappello’s sister.