FBI: No Human Remains In Cleveland Home Search

By: From CBS News, WOIO-TV, Posted by Ralph Hipp
By: From CBS News, WOIO-TV, Posted by Ralph Hipp

CLEVELAND, Ohio (CBS News) -- The FBI says it did not recover human remains in its search of a Cleveland house where a man is accused of holding three women captive for a decade.

FBI spokeswoman Vicki Anderson says investigators have for now concluded their search at the house where the women were found earlier this week.

Anderson said Friday that agents took more than 200 items from the house, though she wouldn't discuss what was found.

Prosecutors said Thursday they may seek the death penalty against suspect Ariel Castro. Police say he impregnated one of his captives at least five times and made her miscarry by starving her and beating her.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine's office confirmed Castro's paternity in a news release Friday. DeWine said a sample of Castro's DNA was taken Thursday and forensic scientists worked through the night on the case.

"You talk about multiple rapes, you talk about all the things that he was doing to these victims," said DeWine. "The fact that this child is in fact his child certainly confirms, if we needed confirmation, it confirms what the victim has been saying."

Officials also were entering the DNA profile into a national database to see if it links him to other crimes. The profile didn't match any other Ohio cases, but national results were pending as of Friday morning, DeWine said.

The girl is the daughter of Amanda Berry, who authorities say was held for about a decade in Castro's house in Cleveland along with Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight.

CBS Cleveland affiliate WOIO-TV reported that Knight was hospitalized for possible reconstructive surgery to heal injuries suffered at the hands of her accused attacker.

Knight's grandmother, Deborah Knight, confirmed the information, telling WOIO-TV: "When she was severely beaten, he had beat her so bad in the face, she has to have facial reconstruction, and she's lost hearing in one ear."

Berry and DeJesus went home with relatives Wednesday. Knight was reported in good condition before being released from a Cleveland hospital.

As CBS News correspondent Dean Reynolds reported, Knight was allegedly held the longest of the three by Castro. She was considered a runaway by her family. Her account of her captivity is in the Cleveland police report written after her rescue:

"Michelle stated that at least five times, she was pregnant with arrested male Ariel. When he found out she was pregnant, she stated Ariel would make her abort the baby. She stated that he starved her for almost two weeks. Then he repeatedly punched her in the stomach until she miscarried."

Castro, 52, is being held on $8 million bail under a suicide watch in jail, where he is charged with rape and kidnapping.

Meanwhile, the relatives of Castro's ex-wife say he terrorized her, frequently beating her, playing twisted psychological games and locking her indoors.

Several relatives of Grimilda Figueroa, who left Ariel Castro years ago and died last year after a long illness, painted a nightmarish portrait of life with Castro as authorities made public horrifying details of the abuse endured by the imprisoned women.

In interviews with The Associated Press on Thursday, the relatives described Castro as a "monster" who abused his wife and locked his family inside their own home. Their views were at odds with those of some of Castro's family and a neighbor, who knew the former school bus driver only as a happy and respectful man.

Figueroa's relatives said Castro savagely beat her, pushing her down a flight of stairs, breaking her nose and dislocating her shoulder, among other injuries. Her sister, Elida Caraballo, said Castro once shoved Figueroa into a cardboard box and closed the flaps over her head.

"He told her, `You stay there until I tell you to get out,"' said Caraballo, who cried as she recounted her sister's torment. "That's when I got scared and I ran downstairs to get my parents."

Castro, to frighten his wife, kept a mannequin wearing a dark wig propped up against a wall and sometimes drove around the neighborhood with it, relatives said.

"He threatened me lots of times with it," said Angel Caraballo, Castro's nephew, who used to play with his cousins at the house where the kidnapped women were found. "He would say, `Act up again, you'll be in that back room with the mannequin."'

One day, Figueroa was returning home with her arms full of groceries when Castro jumped into the doorway with the mannequin, frightening her so badly that she fell backward and smashed her head on the pavement, Elida Caraballo said.


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