News

$8 million bond in Cleveland kidnappings

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Bail was set at $8 million dollars this morning for the man accused of holding three young women captive in his Cleveland home for a decade.

Ariel Castro, 52, was arraigned on multiple counts of kidnapping and rape and bail was set at $2 million for each of the adult victims and the six-year-old child born while the women were imprisoned.

The former school bus driver is accused of kidnapping Michelle Knight, 32; Amanda Berry, 27 and Gina DeJesus, 23, and repeatedly raping, beating, and torturing them while keeping them as prisoners in his West Side house.

Castro is accused of kidnapping the victims separately between 2000 and 2004.

Investigators say he allegedly raped the victims repeatedly, fathering Berry’s six-year-old daughter and impregnating Knight five times, causing her to lose the babies through starvation and beatings.

The women are back in familiar surroundings.

Berry and her daughter arrived at her sister’s home to a chorus of cheers from friends and family.  Her sister, Beth Serrano, asked for privacy and said it will take time before Berry meets the media.

DeJesus also returned to her family’s home yesterday while Knight continues to undergo treatment at MetroHealth Medical Center where she is in good condition.

The women were rescued Monday when a neighbor heard Berry’s screams for help.

Police arrested Castro and his two brothers, but prosecutors say there is no evidence that they knew anything.

Forensic teams walked out of Castro’s home with ropes, chains and locks allegedly used to keep Berry, DeJesus and Knight captive in his home and they searched a second Seymour Avenue house yesterday in their effort to collect as much evidence as they can.

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