Wed 12:54am: UPDATE 1 – Cleveland man who held 3 women captive commits suicide
COLUMBUS – Ohio corrections officials said Ariel Castro, who held three women captive in his home for nearly a decade, has committed suicide at a state prison facility.
Spokeswoman JoEllen Smith said 53-year-old Castro was found hanging in his cell around 9:20 p.m. Tuesday at the Correctional Reception Center in Orient. Prison medical staff performed CPR before Castro was transported to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The three women disappeared separately between 2002 and 2004, when they were 14, 16 and 20 years old. They escaped May 6, when one of the women broke part of a door and yelled to neighbors for help. Castro was arrested that evening.
Castro was sentenced Aug. 1 to life in prison plus 1,000 years on his guilty plea to 937 counts, including kidnapping, rape and two charges of aggravated murder related to one act of forcing one of his victims to miscarry.
Castro said he was a victim of child sex abuse himself and said he had a sex addiction.
The Cleveland house where the three women were held was demolished a few days after sentencing as part of a plea deal that spared Ariel Castro a possible death sentence.
Prosecutors say Castro cried when he signed over the deed and mentioned his “many happy memories” there with the women.