Cleveland Kidnapping Suspect Now Faces 977 Counts

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Ariel Catsro Arraigned in Cleveland

Ariel Castro, accused of keeping three women and one of their daughters captive for years in his Cleveland home, at his arraignment back in May. Courtesy: CNN

(CNN) — A grand jury has issued a fresh indictment charging Ariel Castro with 977 counts relating to allegations that he held three women captive for about a decade in his Cleveland home, the Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office said Friday.

The new indictment — which adds 648 counts to the 329 on which he was indicted last month — encompasses all the years of the women’s captivity, whereas the previous indictment covered only the first four and a half years, the prosecutor’s office said.

Authorities said Castro abducted Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry and Georgina “Gina” DeJesus separately in a two-year period starting in 2002.

The women, as well as Berry’s 6-year-old daughter, who authorities say was fathered by Castro, were freed in May after one of the women shouted for help while Castro was away from his 1,400-square-foot home.

Among the charges are two counts of aggravated murder, in which Castro is accused of intentionally causing the termination of a pregnancy.

Castro also faces 512 counts of kidnapping, 446 counts of rape, seven counts of gross sexual imposition, six counts of felonious assault, three counts of child endangerment and one count of possessing criminal tools.

He will be arraigned July 17.

 

CNN”s Rob Frehse and Jason Hanna contributed to this report. The-CNN-Wire/Atlanta/+1-404-827-WIRE(9473)
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