Ariel Castro, former bus driver who held Cleveland women captive, may have written 2004 news story about them

House where three women and numerous children were found

House where three women and numerous children were found

UPDATE: Correction–The article mentioned in title was written by the son of suspect Ariel Castro. The son wrote it for a journalism course he was taking at Bowling Green University in 2004. Until tonight, he had no idea his father was the one who had abducted and imprisoned three young women.

What an unbelievable story. As I posted on the previous thread, three women who were abducted 9, 10, and 11 years ago have been found today in a house not very far from where they disappeared.

From ABC News:

Gina DeJesus, Amanda Berry and Michelle Knight were found alive, the Cleveland Division of Police said Monday. All three of the women are talking and “appear to be OK,” according to a statement from Cleveland police on Twitter.

Police said that a 52-year-old Hispanic male has been placed under arrest regarding this incident.

The man’s name has now been revealed to be Ariel Castro. And in a bizarre twist, someone by that name wrote a news story about the disappearances in 2004. The article was discovered by AOL senior news editor Jon Passantino and posted on his Twitter feed.

You can follow updates on this story at The Cleveland Plain Dealer as well as listen to “Amanda Berry’s frantic 911 call to police.”

“I’m here. I’m free now,” a frantic Amanda Berry told a 9-1-1 telephone operator moments after she escaped 10 years of captivity on Cleveland’s West Side.

The Cleveland law Department released recordings this evening of calls to 9-1-1 about the discovery of Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight, all of whom disappeared a decade or more ago.

ABC Channel 5:

Hundreds of people gathered in the streets near 2207 Seymour Avenue in Cleveland, where the women were discovered. Cleveland police said Berry, DeJesus and Michelle Knight are alive, talking and appear to be OK.

“I heard screaming… And I see this girl going nuts trying to get outside,” said Charles, a neighbor who found the women. “I go on the porch and she said ‘Help me get out. I’ve been here a long time.’ I figure it was domestic violence dispute.”

“She comes out with a little girl and says ‘Call 911, my name is Amanda Berry’… When she told me, it didn’t register.” He said he made the call and gave Berry the phone. When police arrived, officers asked him if he knew who he rescued.

A witness who spoke Spanish told NewsChannel5’s Stephanie Ramirez that he helped break down the door. He said there was a child who was about 4 or 5 years old with Berry, as well as other children inside the house. He said he recognized Berry from posters.

More from CNN:

Angie Garcia, whose aunt lives across the street from where the women were found, said Berry ran over to the house Monday and begged to use the phone. Berry, who was wearing a wig, told the aunt who she was and then asked to use the phone to call 911.

The women and two young children came out of the house across the street, Garcia said.

“We never saw the girls there and we were always outside,” she said. “We only saw the guy.”

Longer story from Cleveland Plain Dealer with photo gallery

Berry, now 27, DeJesus, 23, and Knight, 32, were taken to MetroHealth Medical Center. The FBI and police will interview the women when they are discharged….

Police arrested the owner of the house, Ariel Castro, 52, who had lived in the house since 1992. Records show he was arrested for domestic violence in 1993, but a grand jury declined to indict him….

Berry disappeared at about 7:40 p.m. April 21, 2003, a day before her 17th birthday. She was last seen leaving her job at a Burger King at West 110th Street and Lorain Avenue.

DeJesus, then 14, vanished April 2, 2004, while walking home from school in the same area. Since then, the two have been the subject of numerous vigils.

Knight, who was 21 at the time of her disappearance, was last seen at a cousin’s house near W. 106 Street and Lorain Avenue on Aug. 23, 2002.

I’ll add further updates in the comment thread.

The man of the hour, Charles Ramsey, who went to the rescue after hearing Amanda's calls for help

The man of the hour, Charles Ramsey, who went to the rescue after hearing Amanda’s calls for help

Amanda Berry with her sister and child who was rescued with her.

Amanda Berry with her sister and child who was rescued with her.


62 Comments on “Ariel Castro, former bus driver who held Cleveland women captive, may have written 2004 news story about them”

  1. Damn this is something, horrifying, but at least this ordeal is over for them….BB did you see this bit of news: Air Force sex-assault chief arrested on sexual battery charges –

    The man leading a U.S. Air Force program responsible for preventing sexual assault has been arrested on suspicion of drunkenly groping a woman in an Arlington, Va., parking lot, officials said Monday.

    I’ve been busy all day with problems I will just refer to as “Cheergate” ugh…I haven’t even gotten online all day and these are the first two stories I see! Wow…

    • Mike Crotch says:

      I find this hard to believe that 3 girls can be held captive in that house for 10 years and no one suspected anything. Moreover if the girls wanted to escape they could have very well plotted a plant and found a way to escape – it was three against one person. Something is not right here.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Blaming the victims is a very bad habit. Stop and think before you do it again.

        You’re right that something is not right. Three girls were taken prisoner. Neighbors did call police w/suspicions and police didn’t do anything. There were also at least three men involved.

        Instead of judging the victims, why don’t you wait and see what comes out?

      • NW Luna says:

        Despite what we see in the movies, it’s pretty hard to escape when you’re chained up or locked up in a basement and have no access to food, water, clothing, or bathroom facilities, except on the whim of your jailor. Doesn’t sound like he left tools and cell phones lying about.

  2. Fannie says:

    Brave girls, they finally got a way out………run for your lives girls, run.

  3. RalphB says:

    What an amazing story!

  4. bostonboomer says:

    Two or three more people have been arrested now.

    UPDATE 10:06pm: Fox 8 News reports live on-air that Cleveland Police Chief Michael McGrath says two or three people arrested regarding Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michele Knight.

  5. Fannie says:

    It reminds me of the Polly Klaas, and Jaycee Lee Dugard cases.

  6. bostonboomer says:

    Another link to the article Ariel Castro wrote, shows more content.

    • bostonboomer says:

      The bastard actually interviewed family members.

      • Bonchy says:

        He is more than a Bastard ….. Scum, a Rat … Unfortunately, Hispanic and if Puerto Rican made me felt ashamed of my race

  7. bostonboomer says:

    Castro’s uncle runs a grocery store in the neighborhood

    Police identified the suspect as Ariel Castro, 52, a bus driver for Cleveland public schools.

    His uncle, Caesar Castro, who owns a grocery store on the same street, said his nephew owned the house where the women were found.

    “Everyone is shocked,” said the elder Castro. He said he had known his nephew to be “a good guy” and a musician who played the bass.

  8. janicen says:

    Geez bb, you are on fire. Between the previous post and this one, my head is spinning! Unbelievable stuff! I’m overwhelmed by this kidnapping post.

  9. bostonboomer says:

    The two other men arrested are Ariel Castro’s brothers, according to CNN

    • bostonboomer says:

      Search of house in progress.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Woman who lives across the street says that Castro’s mother used to come by to visit! She only saw one other man who rode a bicycle.

  10. Angel says:

    Thank you, Charles Ramsey!!!

  11. bostonboomer says:

    Michelle Knight, missing for decade but mother says she searched alone

    For a decade, the community has followed every development in the missing person cases of Gina DeJesus and Amanda Berry — from their families’ pleas for their safe return to the tips that led police to excavate a West side house in a futile search for DeJesus’ body.

    But the public knows little of Michelle Knight, the third woman discovered alive Monday night in a Seymour Avenue home on Cleveland’s West Side.

    Knight, 30, who was 18 at the time of her disappearance on Aug. 23, 2002, was last seen at a cousin’s house near West 106th Street and Lorain Avenue.

    Knight’s grandmother, Deborah Knight said in an interview Monday that, based on the recommendation of police and social workers, family members had concluded that Michelle likely left on her own because she was angry that her son was removed from her custody.

    • bostonboomer says:


      Barbara Knight, who now lives in Florida, said long after police stopped searching, she papered Cleveland’s West Side with fliers. And even after moving out of state, would often return to continue the search on her own.

      Knight said she believes she once saw her daughter walking with an older man at a shopping plaza on West 117th Street several years ago. When the woman trailed behind her companion, he would grab her by the arm and pull her along, Knight said. She said that she yelled Michelle’s name, but the woman did not turn around.

      By Monday night, neither Deborah nor Barbara Knight had heard from police, and both were gathering what details they could from media accounts.

      Barbara Knight said she hopes that police have correctly identified her daughter, adding that she would be heartbroken to return to Cleveland only to find that Michelle was still among the missing.

  12. bostonboomer says:

    On CNN Erin Burnett actually asked best friend of Amanda Berry whether she thought Amanda went with Ariel Castro “by choice.”

    • RalphB says:

      She’s an unbelievable fool!

    • Greg says:

      That would make sense if he was someone she knew.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Except she didn’t know him. And none of them probably enjoyed being chained up in a “dungeon.”

    • More ‘Rape Culture’, embedded in our media. I am glad Amanda Berry’s childhood friend told her NO! Even I wouldn’t go off with a strange 52 year-old stranger, much less teenagers of fourteen, sixteen and eighteen who had full lives and people that were expecting them.

      The odd thing is that this man was in a ‘trusted’ position as the school bus driver and it served him as a cover to continue his horrors. Erin Burnett should know better.

  13. bostonboomer says:
  14. bostonboomer says:
  15. bostonboomer says:

    Dr. speaks:

  16. Passiondph says:

    This is gonna get worse before it gets better, but leave off the speculation.
    Been confirmed that this is NOT the suspect that wrote the article.
    It is his son, who is a journalism student, and is totally shocked.

    • bostonboomer says:

      Yes, I updated the post awhile ago. Thanks though.

      There isn’t any speculation in my post, just news reports. Obviously there is always misinformation in a case like this.

  17. bostonboomer says:

    Post updated to report that the person who wrote the 2004 news article about Gina DeJesus was the son of the suspect. He wrote it for a journalism course he was taking at the time. Until today, he had no idea his father had done these horrible crimes.

  18. bostonboomer says:

    Just saw on twitter that neighbors told Cleveland reporter that Castro’s sister sometimes brought her children to the house to play.

    CORRECTION: It was Castro’s daughter and her children who often came to his house.

  19. bostonboomer says:
  20. Greg says:

    Why do you think they’re not talking about Michelle Knight?

    • bostonboomer says:

      I guess because no one knows that much about her yet. She was an “adult” when she went missing, and authorities assumed she left voluntarily. I’ve heard different ages for when she disappeared–18, 20, 21.

  21. T says:

    I cant even imagine what those women went through

  22. Jake says:

    These three men deserve the DEATH PENALTY!

  23. bostonboomer says:

    Business Insider: Everything we know about Ariel Castro

  24. NW Luna says:

    Investigators also said Tuesday that they had no record of any tips or calls about criminal activity at the house in the years after the victims vanished, but that they were still checking their files.

    However, two neighbors said they were alarmed enough by what they saw at the house to call police on two occasions.

    Elsie Cintron, who lives three houses away, said her daughter once saw a naked woman crawling on her hands and knees in the backyard several years ago and called police. “But they didn’t take it seriously,” she said.