US police to charge brothers after 10-year kidnap
US police interrogated three brothers Wednesday as grim details began to emerge about how three young Ohio women were kidnapped and held captive for 10 years in an unremarkable city home.
Cleveland police chief Michael McGrath said he expected the trio, a group of men in their fifties, to be charged later in the day after a crime that left many wondering how it could have gone undetected for so long.
"We have confirmation they were bound and there were chains and ropes in the hall," McGrath told NBC television's Today Show, near the home in a working class district of Cleveland from which the women were rescued on Monday.
"The investigative task force team, which is comprised of the FBI and Cleveland officers, has been interviewing the victims since last evening and they'll continue today," he said.
He said that until the interviews were complete it will not be possible to describe in detail how they were treated, and said he could not confirm reports that the captives had had multiple pregnancies.
McGrath said they had been allowed out of the house "very rarely."
"They were released out in the backyard once in a while I believe," he said, adding: "Their physical wellbeing was very good considering the circumstances."
"Currently, today, we are interviewing the suspects that were arrested here the night before last. They are talking," he said.
Amanda Berry, 27, Gina DeJesus, 23, and Michelle Knight, 32, were freed from a home on Cleveland's Seymour Avenue on Monday, around ten years after they had each disappeared in separate incidents.
The occupant of the home, a 52-year-old former school bus driver of Puerto Rican origin, Ariel Castro, has been detained, along with his brothers, Pedro, 54, and Onil, 50.
Neighbors have expressed shock that the young women -- long feared dead -- could have been held for so many years in an unassuming home belonging to a man who never raised any suspicions in the working class neighborhood.
The three were rescued after one of the captives managed to alert a neighbor, who broke down the door to free her and the six-year-old daughter she apparently bore as a prisoner.
Police responding to a desperate 911 emergency call found two more women in the detached home with American and Puerto Rican flags on the porch.
Berry's grandmother Fern Gentry spoke to the once-missing teen by phone from Tennessee in a call broadcast by a local ABC News affiliate.
"I'm glad to have you back," Gentry said.
"I'm glad to be back," Berry said, in the first publicly released recording of her voice since the panicked 911 call after her escape.
"I thought you were gone," the grandmother said.
"Nope, I'm here."
Police confirmed that Berry has a six-year-old daughter, Jocelyn, apparently born while she was in captivity. A picture was released showing Berry smiling with her sister and daughter at the hospital.
"She looks great -- happy, healthy and ate a popsicle last night," Cleveland Police Deputy Chief Ed Tomba said about the little girl.
"Seeing her mother made her smile," he said, according to ABC News.
Berry was last seen on April 21, 2003, when she left work at a fast food restaurant just a few blocks from her home.
DeJesus was 14 when she vanished while walking home from school on April 2, 2004. Knight, who was 20 at the time of her disappearance, was last seen at a cousin's house on August 23, 2002.
Some reports have begun to question how the police could have missed signs of the kidnapping for so long, but McGrath inisted that he was absolutely confident that his officers had not missed a chance for an earlier rescue.