Friday 22 September 2017

Castro kidnap survivor 'hung like a fish'

One of three women kidnapped and held in a Ohio man's home for 10 years has said an orange extension cord was used to tie her neck, hands and feet and hang her "like a fish".

Michelle Knight's revelation came in pre-released clips from an interview to be shown today and tomorrow on America's Dr Phil TV talk show.

"I was tied up like a fish, an ornament on the wall," Ms Knight told the TV host. "That's the only way I can describe it."

"I was hanging like this," she said, using her finger to draw a swooping U-shape curve in the air.

In another interview clip posted on the show's YouTube channel, Ms Knight said she was told she would be punished after she tried to pick a lock and escape. She also said her mouth was taped at one point so she would not yell.

The show says Ms Knight tells celebrity psychologist host Phil McGraw of physical, mental and sexual abuse and torture she endured during captivity, including spending weeks in chains.

Ms Knight was kidnapped in August 2002, when she was 20. She, Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus escaped from Ariel Castro's house in Cleveland on May 6 when Ms Berry pushed out a door and called for help.

Ms Knight has been the most public of the kidnap victims since then, including a visit to Castro's neighbourhood before his home was demolished.

Ms Berry and Ms DeJesus plan to collaborate with a Pulitzer Prize-winning team of Washington Post reporters for a book about their ordeal.

Castro, 53, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to life in prison, but a month into his sentence, was found hanged in his cell. His death was ruled a suicide, but a prison report indicated he may have died accidentally while choking himself for a sexual thrill.

Ms Knight was the only victim to appear at Castro's sentencing. She told him, "You took 11 years of my life away, but I've got my life back! I spent 11 years in hell. Now your hell is just beginning."

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