Castro brothers knew nothing? That's what they say

Castro brothers knew nothing about three women held captive by Ariel Castro for a decade, they say. The brothers, Onil and Pedro Castro, called Ariel Castro a 'monster.'

The two brothers of the Cleveland man accused of holding three women captive for about a decade say they have no sympathy for him. One called him a "monster" who he hopes "rots in jail."

Onil and Pedro Castro told CNN that they want Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight to know how sorry they are for their ordeal.

"I'm just grateful they are home and out of that horrible house, and I'd just tell them I'm sorry for what Ariel done," said Pedro Castro, 50.

The brothers were initially taken into custody but released after investigators said there was no evidence against them. Brother Ariel Castro has been charged with rape and kidnapping and is being held on $8 million bond.

Pedro Castro says he was shocked to learn DeJesus was a victim, because they'd known her father for a long time, and Ariel even went to a vigil for her when she went missing.

"You go around like it was nothing? You even went to the vigil. You had posters. You give his momma a hug and you got his daughter captive?" Pedro recalled saying to Ariel.

Pedro Castro said he had been in the house but never noticed anything amiss. He said part of house was blocked off by curtains, and a radio or TV was always on.

Onil Castro, 50, said he wanted Ariel to "suffer in that jail to the last extent."

"I don't care if they even feed him," Onil Castro said. "The monster's a goner."

The brothers said they are worried that people will continue to associate them then with their brother's alleged crimes, even though police say they didn't know anything about it. They have received death threats since being released from custody.

"This has torn my heart apart," Onil Castro said. "This has killed me. I'm a walking corpse right now."

"I hope the world listens to us," Pedro Castro said. "You already got your monster, please give us our freedom."

The three women allegedly imprisoned and sexually abused for years inside a padlocked Cleveland house asked for privacy Sunday, saying through an attorney that while they are grateful for overwhelming support, they also need time to heal.

Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, and Michelle Knight remain in seclusion, releasing their first statements since they were found May 6 when Berry escaped and told a 911 dispatcher, "I'm free now."

They thanked law enforcement and said they were grateful for the support of family and the community.

"I am so happy to be home, and I want to thank everybody for all your prayers," DeJesus said in a statement read by an attorney. "I just want time now to be with my family."

The women, now in their 20s and 30s, vanished separately between 2002 and 2004. At the time, they were 14, 16 and 20 years old.

Investigators say they spent the last nine years or more inside the home of Ariel Castro where they were repeatedly raped and only allowed outside a handful of times. Castro, 52, is being held on $8 million bond. The former school bus driver was charged with four counts of kidnapping and three counts of rape.

Prosecutors said last week they may seek aggravated murder charges — punishable by death — for allegedly impregnating one of his captives at least five times and forcing her miscarry by starving her and punching her in the belly.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.