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Published On: Fri, Jul 26th, 2013

Ariel Castro agrees to plea deal for life in prison to escape death penalty

Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro accepted a plea deal that sends him to prison for life plus “not less than 1,000 years” with no chance of parole for abducting three women and keeping them as sex slaves for over a decade.

Ariel Castro

Ariel Castro

“I’m fully aware and I do consent to it,” Castro said at a hearing in a Cuyahoga County court. The deal will spare him from the possibility of facing the death penalty.

“I knew I was pretty much going to get the book thrown at me,” Castro, 52, told the court.

The agreement as explained by prosecutors would sentence Castro to no “less than 1,000 years” in prison after completing a first sentence of life with no chance of parole.

“You understand by accepting this plea, you’re accepting life without parole,” Judge Michael Russo asked Castro. “You’ll never leave prison alive.”

“Yes, I do,” replied Castro.

“He’s never coming out except nailed in a box or in an ashcan,” said Timothy J. McGinty, the Cuyahoga County prosecutor.

Castro must also forfeit the house that investigators say he turned into his personal torture chamber. The county plans to tear it down.

Castro’s trial was scheduled to start Aug. 5.

The victims, Amanda Berry, Michelle Knight and Gina DeJesus were discovered in Castro’s home in May. They were abducted between 2002 and 2004, when they were in their teens or early 20s. He had a child with Berry during her captivity.

“Amanda, Gina, and Michelle are relieved by today’s plea. They are satisfied by this resolution to the case, and are looking forward to having these legal proceedings draw to a final close in the near future. They continue to desire their privacy,” attorney Kathryn T. Joseph said in a statement.

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About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at [email protected] ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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  1. Ariel Castro gets life in prison, says ‘I am not a monster’ but was addicted to porn - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] Castro pleaded guilty to 937 counts, including aggravated murder, kidnapping, rape and assault. He was sentenced to life in prison plus 1,000 years as part of the plea deal. […]

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