Jury awards $7 million to wrongly accused man

Anthony Caravella spent nearly 26 years in prison

Published On: Mar 26 2013 05:05:52 PM EDT   Updated On: Mar 26 2013 05:14:51 PM EDT
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -

A Broward County civil jury ruled that two former police officers should pay $7 million for framing a mentally-challenged teenager for rape and murder.

Anthony Caravella was just 15 years old when he was arrested in Miramar in 1983. DNA evidence eventually cleared Caravella after he spent nearly 26 years in prison.

On Tuesday, a Fort Lauderdale jury for Caravella's civil lawsuit ruled former Miramar police officers William Mantesta and George Pierson violated his constitutional rights.

The jury awarded Caravella $7 million in damages.

Attorneys for the officers said they have 28 days to file post-trial motions, and one of the those motions will be to ask the judge to overturn the jury’s decision.