Ariel Castro, the Cleveland kidnapper who was convicted of abducting three women and keeping them captive at his Ohio home for nearly a decade, was found hanging in his prison cell on Tuesday night, according to reports.
Ohio correction officials told the media that the 53-year-old Castro was found hanging in his cell at 9:20 p.m. local time at the Correctional Reception Center in Orient, Ohio.
“He was housed in protective custody which means he was in a cell by himself and rounds are required every 30 minutes at staggered intervals,” JoEllen Smith of the Ohio Department of Corrections said in a statement cited by the media.
Medical staff at the prison tried to resuscitate Castro, but he was pronounced dead at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center at 10:52 p.m., the statement added.
An investigation regarding the circumstances leading to Castro’s death has been launched.
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Castro, who abducted three women separately between 2002 and 2004 when they were 14, 16 and 20 years old, was sentenced on Aug. 1 to life in prison without parole plus 1,000 years for charges including kidnapping, murder and rape.