Man Accused of Holding 3 Women Captive Commits Suicide


Ohio state prison inmate Ariel Castro recently committed suicide in his cell at an Orient correctional facility. This past August, the 53-year-old former school bus driver pled guilty to 937 separate charges for having held three women hostage in his home for 10 years in a bid to avoid the death penalty. Those charges included rape and kidnapping. The sentencing court imposed a 1,000-year prison term in addition to Castro’s life sentence.

Per Ohio Department of Corrections spokesperson JoEllen Smith, prison staff found Castro hanging in his cell at approximately 9:20 p.m. last Tuesday. Smith further advised that prison medical personnel did CPR on Castro before transporting him to a local hospital. Castro was pronounced dead shortly afterward.

Prior to Castro’s suicide, prison officials had placed him under a protective watch wherein prison staff conducted personal checks on him at 30-minute intervals. Prison officials reportedly placed Castro in protective custody due to the extreme notoriety and high profile of his case.

Franklin County Coroner Dr. Jan Gorniak confirmed the cause of death as self-inflicted hanging, but declined further comment on the circumstances surrounding the discovery of Castro’s body.

Gruesome case details

During a two-year period between 2002 and 2004, a trio of Ohio women comprised of Gina DeJesus, Michelle Knight, and Amanda Berry disappeared on separate occasions. They were finally set free on May 6 when Ms. Berry managed to break through a door and attract the attention of nearby neighbors.

Concerned parties were overjoyed that the ladies were found alive and liberated. They were appalled to learn that Castro Ms. Berry had borne a daughter fathered by Castro during her captivity who he also held captive. The child was six years old when she and her mother were found and freed.

Law enforcement officials stated that all three women had been repeatedly beaten, raped, deprived of toilet facilities and food, and bound with chains throughout their incarceration at Castro’s basement. Former hostage Knight also revealed that Castro had deliberately induced repeated miscarriages by starving and beating her severely.

During his sentencing allocution, Castro told the judge that he was “not a monster” but a “sick” man. Defense lawyers made an unsuccessful motion to have their client undergo a complete psychological evaluation prior to his custody transfer to state officials after Castro’s guilty plea.


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