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Judge Caprio announces he has pancreatic cancer

The judge, widely known for the “Caught in Providence” TV show, recently turned 87, and in an emotional video he asks people to pray for him

In October 2017, Judge Frank Caprio speaks to a defendant during his morning session inside Municipal Court at the Providence Police StationJessica Rinaldi

PROVIDENCE — Frank Caprio Sr., the former chief judge of the Providence municipal court known for his nationally syndicated TV show “Caught in Providence,” on Wednesday announced in an emotional video that he has pancreatic cancer.

In a video posted on Facebook, Caprio said he recently celebrated his 87th birthday and received “wonderful messages” from people around the world.

But, he said, “This birthday is a little different than any other I have ever had. Quite recently, I was not feeling well and received a medical examination, and the report was not a good one.”

Caprio said he has been diagnosed with cancer of the pancreas, which he described as an “insidious form of cancer.” The video showed him hooked up to IVs, receiving medical treatment.


He said he was being treated by a “wonderful team of doctors” in Rhode Island, and at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.

“I pray that God guides their thoughts and their hands in their treatment of me,” Caprio said. “I know this is a long road, and I am fully prepared to fight as hard as I can.”

He said people have been asking him what they can do for him. And he said, “I would ask each of you in your own way to please pray for me. I am in need of the power of prayer, which I believe in addition to the medical treatment that I’m receiving is the most powerful weapon to help me survive this.”

Choking up, Caprio said, “Just knowing you were keeping me in your thoughts means the world to me.”

In January, Caprio confirmed that was stepping aside from his role as chief judge to become chief judge emeritus, but he said he wasn’t planning to fully retire from the part-time role that made him a star — “Caught in Providence” — the show where he forgives parking tickets and imparts wisdom to city residents. The show airs regularly on the Law & Crime network.


He and his wife Joyce Caprio have five children, including former state treasurer Frank T. Caprio and former state representative David A. Caprio.

Edward Fitzpatrick can be reached at edward.fitzpatrick@globe.com. Follow him @FitzProv.