Judge Frank Caprio (born November 23, 1936) is the television judge on Caught in Providence, which airs on WLNE-TV. He is also the chief municipal judge in Providence, Rhode Island and the former Chairman of the Rhode Island Board of Governors.
Judge Frank Caprio is the son of Antonio (Tup) Caprio, an immigrant from Teano, Italy, and Filomena Caprio. As a youngster he worked with his father on his milkman route while attending the Providence, Rhode Island public schools, where he was an All-State wrestler at Central High School. He later graduated from Providence College with a degree in political science. He was a civics teacher at Hope High School in Providence while simultaneously attending Suffolk University Law School (evening division) in Boston, Massachusetts. He has been a member of the Rhode Island state bar and federal bars since 1965.
Judge Frank Caprio is currently the Chief Judge of the Providence Municipal Court. He was appointed in 1985, and has been re-appointed six times by the mayor of Providence and the Providence City Council. Judge Caprio also served as the Chairman of the Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education, directing the $600 million annual budget and major decisions of the public colleges and universities in the state. Three successive Rhode Island governors have appointed Caprio to this board. He was also a member of the Rhode Island Board of Regents for Elementary and Secondary Education. He has recently gained local fame for his television hit “Caught in Providence” which airs on the ABC affiliate and state cable Interconnect channel in Providence showing the unedited proceedings of the Providence Municipal Court.
In 1960, at the age of 23 Caprio upset a thirty-year incumbent council president in the race for city councilman of Providence’s thirteenth ward where he served until 1970. Frank Caprio was also campaign manager for the successful Lt. Governor races of J. Joseph Garrahy and Thomas DiLiugio, in 1968 and 1976 respectively. Caprio has also been elected to the Democratic National Convention as a delegate on many occasions and was a Democratic candidate for Rhode Island attorney general in 1970 and mayor of Providence in 1978.
Judge Caprio is also a senior partner at the Providence law firm Caprio & Caprio which he founded; a partner in the landmark Coast Guard House restaurant in Narragansett, Rhode Island. He received an honorary Doctor of Laws from his alma mater Suffolk University Law School in 1991, received an honorary degree from his alma mater Providence College in 2008 and was the commencement speaker at the University of Rhode Island several times over the past decade.He has established scholarships in his father’s name at Suffolk University Law School and Central High School (Providence, Rhode Island) for top students that come from 1st generation immigrant families.
He is married to Joyce Caprio. They have five children, including sons, Candidate for Rhode Island General Treasurer, Frank T. Caprio and Chair of the Rhode Island Democratic Party, David Caprio.