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Missing Ohio Women Reunite With Their Families as Suspected Captor Is Charged

May 8, 2013 at 12:00 AM EST
Two of the three long-missing women freed from a Cleveland home where they were held captive for 10 years have been reunited with relatives. One remains hospitalized and there was no word on her condition. Ray Suarez reports on kidnapping and rape charges for Ariel Castro, the owner of the house.
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RAY SUAREZ: Now we turn to the dramatic events unfolding in Northeastern Ohio.

Authorities today revealed more about how three women were held for a decade and outlined kidnapping and rape charges against one man. Neighbors and news cameras swarmed the scene this morning, as Amanda Berry and her 6-year-old daughter conceived in captivity arrived at her sister’s home in Cleveland.

The sister, Beth Serrano, asked for time and understanding.

BETH SERRANO, Sister of Amanda Berry: We appreciate all you have done for us through the past 10 years. Please respect our privacy until we are ready to make our statements.

And thank you.

RAY SUAREZ: Berry is now 27. She was rescued Monday from a rundown Cleveland home 10 years after she was kidnapped.

Police also found 23-year-old Gina DeJesus, who disappeared in 2004. She, too, returned home today.

FELIX DEJESUS, Father of Gina DeJesus: I knew she needed me, and I never gave up, never gave up searching for her.

RAY SUAREZ: The oldest of the three women, Michelle Knight, remained hospitalized. Her grandmother said the family thought Knight left home on her own when she vanished in 2002 at age 20.

New details of the victims’ ordeal also emerged today. A city councilman briefed on the case said the women suffered repeated sexual abuse and miscarriages. On NBC this morning, Police Chief Michael McGrath said investigators found restraints in the house where the women were held.

POLICE CHIEF MICHAEL MCGRATH, Cleveland: We have confirmation that they were bound and there was chains and ropes in the home.

RAY SUAREZ: Meanwhile, FBI agents searched the home of Ariel Castro for evidence. They removed the door that Berry had kicked out and escaped through before she called 911 on a neighbor’s phone.

Castro, along with his brothers Pedro and Onil, have been arrested, and remained in jail. Authorities announced late today Ariel Castro has given a detailed statement, and is being charged with kidnapping and rape.

As for his two brothers:

VICTOR PEREZ, Cleveland City Prosecutor: No charges will be filed against these two individuals at this time. There is no evidence that these two individuals had any involvement in the commission of the crimes committed against Michelle, Gina, Amanda, and the minor child.

RAY SUAREZ: Officials said they have many questions that still need answers, and there could be more charges to come.