In what might be one of the craziest stories of 2013, three Cleveland women have been rescued after being kidnapped by Ariel Castro, where they were beaten, sexually abused, and forced to live in fear for more than a decade.
Amanda Berry, Gina Dejesus and Michelle Knight were all kidnapped on the same street, however, in 2003, 2004, and 2002, respectively. On Monday, Berry attempted to make an escape with her 6-year-old daughter through the front door of her prison. That’s when bystander-turned-hero Charles Ramsey heard her cries, called the police, and helped her through the screen door.
While Ramsey has subsequently shot to internet stardom due to his charismatic personality, punchlines and, of course, heroism, the facts trickling down from the investigation are proving to be much more gripping…and gruesome.
Here are the latest updates in the bizarre case.
1. Michelle Knight Was Ariel Castro’s “Punching Bag”
New details emerging from the Cleveland kidnapping case reveal that victim Michelle Knight, who was held hostage for 11 years, endured most of the physical abuse out of the three women held captive.
Knight was subjected to numerous beatings and treated like a “punching bag,” according to a family friend. The friend told CNN that Knight was often hit with hand weights and other heavy objects, resulting in hearing loss in one ear. She may also undergo facial reconstruction surgery to correct injuries from years of physical abuse.
These details come after we learned that Ariel Castro repeatedly raped Knight, Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus, and caused Knight to miscarry by punching her in the stomach and starving her.
According to police, Castro had no interest in having children with Knight because she was only 4-foot-7 and he believed that she might be “mentally disabled.”
Castro, however, did allow Berry to give birth to his child, who is now being identified as 6-year-old Jocelyn.
This story is developing.