CLEVELAND (KDKA/AP) – Three women who were found alive after being missing for a decade have been released from the hospital.
The women were found locked in a Cleveland home on Monday when one of them was finally able to escape and get the attention of a neighbor.
“The girl, Amanda, told the police, ‘I ain’t just the only one. There’s more girls up in that house.’ So, they go up there, 30, 40 deep. And when they came out, it was astonishing,” Charles Ramsey, a neighbor, said.
Police and the people of Cleveland shared a sense of happiness and relief as the three women were found alive. Michelle Knight disappeared in 2002, when she was 19-years-old. Amanda Berry disappeared the day before her 17th birthday in 2003.
The other woman in the home was Gina DeJesus who went missing at the age of 14 in 2004.
The women were found tied up in a house in Cleveland and this morning, they were all released from the hospital.
Three brothers were arrested in connection with the crime. They have been identified as Ariel Castro, 52; Pedro Castro, 54; and Onil Castro, 50. Ariel Castro owns the house where the women were found.
FBI evidence technicians were at the house until 5 a.m. Investigators have not yet interviewed the women in detail to learn exactly what happened about the abductions and the decade of captivity. They wanted to give them time to reunite with their families.
Last night, the women were taken to a Cleveland hospital to be evaluated. They are now home with their families.
One mother said she never gave up hope that her daughter was alive. Berry’s mother never gave up either, but after battling an illness, she died and was not able to see the moment.
“The nightmare is over. These three young ladies have provided us with the ultimate definition of survival and perseverance. The healing can now begin,” FBI Special Agent Stephen Anthony said.
“Thankfully, and I mean thankfully, due to Amanda’s brave actions, these three women are alive today. Three men have been arrested in this case. Next steps, there’s 10 years of logistical information that has to be sorted through, numerous interviews have to be completed, the FBI Evidence Recovery team is processing the scene. Cleveland Police Chief Michael McGrath said.
When Amanda came out of the house yesterday, she had a 6-year-old child with her, a child that’s been identified as her daughter.
KDKA-TV’s Brenda Waters talked with a neighbor who said she told police about this a year ago. She said this could have been resolved had they listened to her.
Here’s a timeline of key events in the case:
– Aug. 23, 2002: Michelle Knight, 20, vanishes. She was last seen at a cousin’s house near Lorain Avenue and West 106th Street.
– April 21, 2003: Amanda Berry, 16, disappears after leaving her job at a Burger King at the corner of Lorain Avenue and West 110th Street, a few blocks from her home.
– January 2004: Police go to Ariel Castro’s home at 2207 Seymour Ave., about 3 miles from where Knight and Berry were last seen. No one answers the door. Child welfare officials had alerted police that Castro, a school bus driver, apparently left a child unattended on a bus. Police later spoke to Castro and determined there was no criminal intent.
– April 2, 2004: Georgina “Gina” DeJesus, 14, disappears while walking home from school. She was last seen at a telephone booth at the corner of Lorain Avenue and 105th Street.
– November 2004: Psychic Sylvia Browne tells Berry’s mother, Louwana Miller, on “The Montel Williams Show” that her daughter is dead.
Watch Christine D’Antonio’s report:
– March 2, 2006: Miller, 43, dies after being hospitalized with pancreatitis and other ailments. She had spent the previous three years looking for her daughter.
– November 2011: A neighbor, Israel Lugo, said he heard pounding on some of the doors of Castro’s house, which had plastic bags on the windows. Lugo said officers knocked on the front door, but no one answered. Officers walked around outside the house and left, Lugo said.
– April 2, 2013: Family and friends of DeJesus gather for a vigil on the corner where she was last seen on the ninth anniversary of her disappearance.
– May 6, 2013: Knight, Berry, DeJesus and a 6-year-old girl believed to be Berry’s daughter are found at Castro’s home. Police arrest three brothers, Ariel Castro, Pedro Castro and Onil Castro, in connection with the women’s disappearances.