Cleveland kidnapping suspect faces 977 charges
The man accused of holding three women
captive in his Cleveland home for about a
decade was charged Friday with hundreds
of additional counts covering the entire
time period of the alleged imprisonment.
The 977-count indictment against Ariel
Castro includes charges of rape and
kidnapping and two counts of aggravated
murder on accusations that Castro
starved and punched one of the women
while she was pregnant until she
The indictment does not include charges
that could carry a death sentence, but
Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty
said he is still reserving that option.
Ariel Castro pleads not guilty in
Cleveland kidnap-rape case
How the Ohio missing women's
Castro, 53, is charged with kidnapping the
three women and holding them captive —
sometimes restrained in chains — along
with a 6-year-old girl he fathered with
one of them.
Castro pleaded not guilty to an earlier
329-count indictment. A message was left
with his attorney Friday seeking comment
on the new charges.
Castro is charged with two counts of
aggravated murder related to one act,
saying he purposely caused the unlawful
termination of the pregnancy of one of
the women. The new indictment also
charges him with 512 counts of
kidnapping, 446 counts of rape, seven
counts of gross sexual imposition, six
counts of felonious assault, three counts
of child endangerment and one count of
possessing criminal tools.
'This gruesome case'
The 576-page indictment covers the
period from August 2002, when the first
girl disappeared, to May, when the
women were rescued. The first indictment
covered only the period from August
2002 to February 2007.
"Today's indictment moves us closer to
resolution of this gruesome case,"
McGinty said in a statement. "Our
investigation continues, as does our
preparation for trial."
News that the women had been found
alive electrified the Cleveland area, where
two of the victims were household names
after years of searches, publicity and
vigils. But elation soon turned to shock as
allegations about their treatment began to
The indictment against Castro alleges he
repeatedly restrained the women,
sometimes chaining them to a pole in a
basement, to a bedroom heater or inside
a van. It says one of the women tried to
escape and he assaulted her with a
vacuum cord around her neck.