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Man Who Damaged Michelangelo’s David Strikes Again

October 13, 1993

PRATO, Italy (AP) _ The man who hammered off a piece of Michelangelo’s statue of David was allegedly caught scribbling with a black marker pen on a 15th century church fresco Wednesday.

Piero Cannata, 49, was arrested by Carabiniere paramilitary police who were on a routine patrol, said an official of the force, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Cannata defaced about a square yard of a fresco by Renaissace master Filippo Lippi on the left side of Prato’s cathedral.

The fresco, called ″The Obsequies of St. Stephen,″ was part of a cycle painted in 1452-1466 that describes the life of the saint and is considered a major work of the Italian Renaissance.

The parish priest, who declined to give his name, said the ink was soluble in alcohol and probably could be removed without damaging the fresco.

″It’s not a big thing, but it’s something that hurts,″ he said.

Cannata broke off a toe on the David’s left foot in September 1991 at the Accademia museum in nearby Florence. He was ruled mentally ill during his trial and spent a period in a psychiatric hospital.

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