Ariel Castro: This guy's a monster, $8 million bond, death penalty

Man described as monster charged with four counts of kidnapping and three counts of rape, to start. Photo: Ariel Castro, monster / AP

WASHINGTON, May 10, 2013 – Ariel Castro is confessing to some of the allegations against him. Arraigned in court Thursday the man described as a monster is being charged with four counts of kidnapping and three counts of rape.

However it is expected that more charges will follow and hours after the arraignment, Ohio prosecutors say they will seek death penalty chargers stemming from the abuse and forced miscarriages suffered by Michelle Knight.

SEE RELATED: Cleveland Miracle: Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, Michelle Knight rescued

In detailed interrogations Castro has admitted to some of the things he is alleged to have done. The incident reports state that Michelle Knight says she was pregnant at least five times, and that Castro starved her for up to two weeks, then repeatedly punched her until she self-aborted.

Gruesome details of the abductions and imprisonment of Gina DeJesus, Amanda Berry and Michelle Knight emerged from Castro’s first court appearance. Unfortunately they will probably become much worse as the case against Castro develops.

Brian Murphy, prosecutor, said that the four kidnapping and three rape charged stem from a “premeditated, deliberate and depraved decisions to snatch three young ladies from Cleveland’s west-side streets to use for whatever self-gratifying, self-serving ways that he saw fit.”

Murphy continued saying that the three girls were “forced to endure a horrifying ordeal for more than a decade” in which they had been “bound, restrained and sexually assaulted.

SEE RELATED: Details on recovery of Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, Michelle Knight

Castro may face charges of murder in the course of kidnapping, a charge that carries the death penalty according to Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy J, McGinty.  During a televised press conference McGinty says the case will be presented to the grand jury, and they could seek murder charges for each of Knight’s alleged pregnancies.

“Based on the facts, I fully intend to seek charges for each and every act of sexual violence, rape, each day of kidnapping, every felonious assault, all his attempted murders and each act of aggravated murder he committed by terminating pregnancies” during the years the women were held.

“My office of the county prosecutor will also engage in a formal process in which we evaluate whether to seek charges eligible for the death penalty,” he said. “The law of Ohio calls for the death penalty for those most depraved criminals who commit aggravated murder during the course of a kidnapping.”

Mike Dewine Ohio Attorney General says that even with Castro’s cooperation and the masses of evidence against him, that “no case is a slam dunk” but that information being gathered against Castro is very strong.  

A DNA profile sample from the defendant is being checked and results are expected shortly in able to determine if Castro is linked to other crimes.  There are allegations that another woman was in the house at the time Michelle Knight was abducted.

A 2005 note found in Castro’s home, the authorities say, includes details of alleged abuse Castro suffered at the hands of an undisclosed family member.  Scott Taylor, WOIO investigative reporter said that the letter includes statement such as there is “something wrong in my head,” that he treated the three women “well,” “I am a sexual predator,” “I don’t know why I kept looking for another.”

One of the bizarre statements is that he should kill himself and “leave all my money to my victims.” The “note” also implies that Castro “blamed” the girls for getting captured by getting into his car when he offered them a “ride home.” 

Mike McGraff, police chief, confirms that ropes and chains, as well as a mattress, have been recovered from the house. Photos of the backyard show a tiny cross.

The girls in the house did watch news coverage of the efforts to find them; in a cruel hoax, in the basement where they were kept, the “Missing Persons” posters for Berry and DeJesus were found.  Adding to Ms. Knight’s distress is that she received much less attention by media, because the police regarded her as a runaway, as she had fought with her mother just before she disappeared at the age of 21.

Castro’s family is speaking out.  Daughter Angie Gregg speaks of things now making sense, including her noticing that “, he had his house locked down, or he would disappear from dinner at my Grandma’s house for an hour or more at a time. 

Heartbreaking to watch is Castro’s mother hysterically crying my son is sick, and beg forgiveness saying she is suffering “over my son’s pain.”

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Jacquie Kubin

Jacquie Kubin is an award winning journalist that began writing in 1993 following a successful career in marketing and advertising in Chicago.  She started Communities Digital News in 2009 as a way to adapt to the changing online journalism marketing place.  Jacquie is President and Managing Editor of Communities Digital News, LLC and a frequent contributor to The Washington Times Communities as well as a member of the National Association of Professional Woman, New American Foundation and the Society of Professional Journalist.  Email Jacquie here

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