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Kidnapper may face death penalty

PROSECUTORS may seek the death penalty against Ariel Castro, the man accused of imprisoning three women at his home for a decade, as police charged that he impregnated one of his captives at least five times and made her miscarry.

The allegations were contained in a police report that also said another one of the women, Amanda Berry, was forced to give birth in a plastic children's pool.

Prosecutor Timothy McGinty said yesterday that his office will decide whether to bring aggravated murder charges punishable by death in connection with the pregnancies that were terminated by force.

"Capital punishment must be reserved for those crimes that are truly the worst examples of human conduct," he said.

Castro, a former school bus driver (52), is being held on $8m (€6m) bail under a suicide watch in jail, where he is charged with rape and kidnapping.

McGinty said Castro will be charged for every act of sexual violence, assault and other crimes committed against the women, suggesting the counts could number in the hundreds, if not thousands.

Among the chilling details in the police report were:

• Berry, now 27, told officers that she was forced to give birth in a plastic children's pool in the house so it would be easier to clean up.

• Michelle Knight, now 32, said her five pregnancies ended after Castro starved her for at least two weeks and "repeatedly punched her in the stomach until she miscarried".

hnews@herald.ie


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