LATEST: Former THE SOPRANOS star Lillo Brancato Jr has been charged with the murder of a New York City police officer.

Brancato Jr, 29, is accused of fatally shooting officer Daniel Enchautegui, who interrupted the actor and his accomplice Steven Armento allegedly breaking into a Bronx home in search of drugs.

The actor and Armento are currently recovering from gunshot wounds in the Jacobi Medical Center. Brancato Jr has been charged with second-degree murder, while Armento faces first-degree murder charges.

Last night (12DEC05), Brancato Jr's A BRONX TALE co-star Robert De Niro told of his shock at hearing of the young actor's crimes.

De Niro says, "This is deeply disturbing news, a tragedy beyond comprehension."

Colombian-born Brancato played small-time mobster MATT BEVILACQUA in the 1999-2000 series of The Sopranos.