Ariel Castro, the 52-year-old man who held three Cleveland, Ohio, women in captivity for a decade, was arraigned in court Thursday morning. Castro will be charged with rape and kidnapping and faces an $8 million bond.
Castro was charged with four counts of kidnapping, for Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, Michelle Knight and the daughter born to Berry, and three counts of rape, the Associated Press reports. His bond was set at $8 million; to post bail, he would have to provide $4 million in cash or the full $8 million in collateral.
Castro was arraigned at Cleveland Municipal Court, and, according to AP, he had a resigned demeanor, never looking up while biting his collar as he signed the court documents. The women were freed after spending a decade in Castro’s captivity when Berry escaped from the basement Monday and called 911. Police say Castro kept Berry, DeJesus and Knight roped and chained in his basement and the three women were subject to years of sexual abuse and psychological trauma.
The women were repeatedly raped by Castro, authorities said, and City Councilman Brian Cummins said at a news conference that they suffered several miscarriages during their years in captivity.
“We know that the victims have confirmed miscarriages, but with who, how many and what conditions, we don't know,” Cummins said.
Deputy Police Chief Ed Tomba said the three women provided statements to police and, according to AP, the statements indicate Castro was the only individual involved in their abuse and captivity. His two older brothers, Pedro and Onli Castro, were arrested but not charged with any crimes.
The brothers had previous charges against them. Pedro had an outstanding warrant for an open container charge from 2011, while Onli had open container and drug abuse charges from 2001. But Judge Lauren Moore released Pedro for time served, the New York Daily News reports. The public defender assigned to Onil, Kathleen DeMetz, filed a motion to dismiss the charges.
The arraignment Thursday lasted five minutes, and Castro did not enter a plea to the charges, the New York Daily News reports
A paternity test was being conducted to determine if Castro was the father of Berry’s 6-year-old daughter, Sophie, and police are still investigating the case, most recently searching a vacant house near Castro’s home for any evidence, AP notes.