Police release mug shots of brothers arrested in Ohio missing women’s case
CLEVELAND (CNN) — Three long-missing women — Amanda Berry, 27; Georgina “Gina” DeJesus, 23; and Michelle Knight, 32 — and a child believed to be Berry’s were found alive Monday in a Cleveland home, police said. The women are believed to have been abducted years ago — in 2002, 2003 and 2004 — and held captive at the home, according to police.
Three suspects, all brothers, including the home’s owner, Ariel Castro, 52, were arrested and are awaiting charges, police said.
Here are the most recent developments in the case:
— Cuyahoga County authorities probably will charge the three Castro brothers Wednesday or Thursday, Special Agent Vicki Anderson, a spokeswoman for the FBI in Cleveland, said Tuesday.
Previously reported developments:
— The three women and the child were rescued Monday after a neighbor, Charles Ramsey, said he heard screaming from the home.
— Ramsey said he kicked in the bottom of a door, and a woman came out with a girl and said, “Call 911, my name is Amanda Berry.”
— Ramsey and Berry called 911, authorities said. “Help me, I am Amanda Berry,” she begged the operator. “I’ve been kidnapped, and I’ve been missing for 10 years. And I’m here, I’m free now.”
— In addition to Berry, police found DeJesus and Knight at the home; all three said they were held captive there, according to authorities.
— Police later arrested Ariel Castro, who’s identified as a former school bus driver, and his two brothers. Police believe Ariel Castro was the only one of the brothers who lived at the home, Cleveland’s Deputy Police Chief Ed Tomba told reporters late Monday.
— Knight, of Cleveland, had been last seen on August 22, 2002, and was reported missing by a family member the next day, city Public Safety Director Martin Flask said. She was 21 at the time, according Cleveland police.
— Berry was last seen after finishing her shift at a Burger King in Cleveland in 2003. It was the eve of her 17th birthday.
— DeJesus, of Cleveland, disappeared nearly a year later, in April 2004. She was 14.
— The names and ages of Ariel Castro’s arrested brothers are Pedro Castro, 54, and Onil Castro, 50, Cleveland police said Tuesday.
— Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson said Tuesday that investigators are working to answer three questions: Why and how the women were taken, and how they remained undetected.
— Officials have no indication that anybody living near the Cleveland home ever called authorities about anything suspicious there, Flask said Tuesday. Flask said that assessment is based on an initial review of city databases; officials will continue to examine the databases, he said.
— Since the first disappearance, police were called to the home once — in January 2004 — Flask said. Investigators were there at the request of Children and Family Services to investigate a complaint that Castro left a child on a school bus while he was working as a school bus driver, Flask said. Investigators knocked on the home’s door but were “unsuccessful in making contact.” The matter was later dropped when investigators determined that Castro had no criminal intent in the bus incident, he added.
— Investigators are interested in looking at other properties connected to the suspects, Tomba said Tuesday.
— When asked whether Castro had gained his alleged captives’ trust through his job as a school bus driver, and whether he had driven them when they were students, Tomba said investigators have no evidence of that. “That’s up to the girls to tell us,” he said Tuesday. “We still don’t know; that is one of the great unknowns right now. We anticipate getting that information from the ladies, not the suspects.”
— Jaycee Dugard, who was abducted as a child and freed in 2009 after 18 years of captivity behind the home of a California couple, made the following statement regarding the discovery of the Cleveland women: “These individuals need the opportunity to heal and connect back into the world. This isn’t who they are. It is only what happened to them. The human spirit is incredibly resilient. More than ever this reaffirms we should never give up hope.”
— The uncle of the three suspects in custody said family members are “surprised” about the developments. “Shame on you,” Julio Castro told CNN’s Martin Savidge, when asked what he would say to his nephews.
— U.S. Rep. Ed Royce, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, made reference to the once-missing Cleveland women at a hearing Tuesday on human trafficking. “The eyes of our country are riveted by the welcome rescue of three young women abducted and detained for over a decade in a Cleveland home,” the California Republican said. ” And as we rejoice at their rescue, this hearing today, this testimony today, underscores the sad reality that millions of other girls around this world and indeed right here, in our own communities … are being robbed of their youth.”