Ariel Castro

Born in Puerto Rico, Ariel Castro was born to Pedro Castro and Lillian. His parents were divorced when he was in his initial years. He hanged himself to death in his detention cell at the rehabilitation center. He was charged for rape, kidnapping and murder. 

Ariel Castro’s Overview

  • Birth Name: Ariel Castro
  • Age: 53
  • Date of Birth: July 10, 1960
  • Place of Birth: Duey, Puerto Rico
  • Date of Death: September 3, 2013
  • Place of Death: Correctional Reception Center, Ohio, US
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: 
  • Net Worth:
  • Father: Pedro Castro
  • Mother: Lillian Rodriguez
  • Siblings: Nine (Full and Half Siblings)

Read also: Jaycee Dugard, Held Captive for 18 Years

Early Life, Education and Family (Parents and Siblings)

  • Born on July 10, 1960, to Pedro Castro and Lillian Rodriguez, Ariel Castro was a child when his parents got divorced. 
  • Pedro shifted to the mainland US along with his mother and three full siblings, the family started living in Reading, Pennsylvania.
  • However, they later settled in Cleveland, Ohio. 
  • Castro had nine siblings in total, three full and six half. 
  • He graduated from the Lincoln West High School of Cleveland in 1979. 

Personal Life

  • Ariel Castro met his girlfriend Grimilda when his family shifted to a nearby street as hers in the 1980s.
  • The couple moved to their own house in 1992. 
  • Their home was a two story establishment in 1,400 square feet with 4 bedrooms.
  • Things started worsening after they moved in together. 
  • According to her sister, Castor used to beat her and break her nose, arms and ribs and also caused an inoperable tumor in her brain. 
  • He also threw her down the stairs resulting in a crack in her skull.
  • In 1993, Ariel Castro was arrested on the charges of domestic violence, however, he wasn’t indicted by the grand jury. 
  • In 1996, his girlfriend moved out of their home and secured the custody of her four children while on the other hand police detained Castro. 
  • However, Castro continued to attach and threaten them and so Figueroa, in 2005, filed charges against him for causing her injuries and abducting their daughters. 
  • In 2012, Figueroa died due to the complications of tumor in her brain. 
  • At the age of 52, Castro was arrested when he was working as the bus driver for Cleveland Metropolitan School. 


  • Castro kidnapped and restrained them in his home at Seymour Avenue. 

Michelle Knight

  • Michele disappeared on August 23, 2002 after she left her cousin’s house. 
  • On the day of her disappearance, her appearance in the court was scheduled for her child’s custody. 
  • After her rescue, authorities believed that she ran away voluntarily in rage after losing her son’s custody. 
  • After kidnapping, Castro kept Knight tied on the upper floor of his house for three days without food. 
  • Also, it was revealed from her dairy about the forced sexual abuse.
  • Knight told the police that Castro had impregnated her more than five times and led her to miscarriages every time by beating and hitting her and dumbbells and slamming her against the wall. 
  • Her grandmother reported that she required a facial reconstruction surgery due to beating and also lost hearing capability in one ear. 
  • It was reported that, Castro forced her to assist in the birth of Berry’s child. 

Amanda Berry

  • On April 21, 2003, Amanda Berry disappeared, she was last seen in the evening around 8 when she told her sister that she is taking a ride from his work place to home.  
  • Until a few weeks of her disappearance, FBI considered that she has ran away.
  • However, when a call from an unknown male was received by her mother saying that he has Amanda and she will be back in a few days, the matter was looked in. 
  • In December 2006, Berry gave birth to a daughter and the DNA reports confirmed that Ariel Castro is the father of the child. 

Gina DeJesus

  • Georgina ‘Gina’ disappeared in April 2004 while she was on her way to home from school. 
  • During the time, Gina was friends with Arlene, Castro’s daughter. She was the last person to see her. 
  • DeJesus was thinking that Castro will drop her to home since she trust her because she was friends with her daughter.
  • No one saw her abduction, also no Amber alert was issued.
  • A year later, FBI issued a composite sketch of the suspected male. 

Escape and Rescue

  • In May  2013, Berry escaped from Castor’s house after he failed to lock the door and left for somewhere and so escaped with her six year old daughter. 
  • Neighbor Charles and Cordero helped her in escaping from the house, Cordero initially failed to help her since he was not able to speak English. 
  • After escaping, she went to another neighbor’s house and called at 911 and said that she has been kidnapped and have been missing from the past ten years and needs help. 
  • Police officers entered his house and walked upstairs and peeked from the slightly open door.
  • Knight walked through the hallway and said “You saved me”. 
  • Soon Knight and DeJesus walked out of the house along with children. 
  • All of them were taken to the MetroHealth Medical Center. 

Arrest and Legal Undertakings

  • On May 6, 2013, Ariel Castro was arrested and was charged with four counts of kidnappings and three charges of rape. 
  • Two brothers of Castro were also arrested but were later released after finding that they had no involvement in the case. 
  • Afterwards, he appeared in the court for the first time on May 9. He was charged for kidnapping, attempted murder, assault. 
  • On July 26, he was charged of 977 charges which included kidnapping, rape and murder. 
  • During the hearing on August 1, he was sentenced to the life in prison along with 1000 years without any parole. 
  • He was also fined with $100,000. 

Read also: Chris Watts, Murdered Who Killed His Wife and Daughter


  • Berry, DeJesus and Knight released a visual statement in July 2013 to thank the public for their support. 
  • An attorney of DeJesus and Berry stated that the women still have a strong desire for privacy. 
  • Knight later discussed about the happenings in the interview with the People Magazine, she also changed her name. 
  • Berry and DeJesus got the honorary diploma from the John Marshall High School in 2015. 
  • DeJesus also volunteered for the Amber Alert Committee. 

House Demolition

  • On August 7, 2013, Castor’s house was demolished where he held the women.
  • It was also blurred on the Google Maps. 

Ariel Castro’s Death

  • On September 3, 2013, Castro was found hanging in his detention cell in Orient, Ohio.
  • At the time of his death, he was 53. 
  • He was taken to the Ohio State University Medical Center due was declared dead. 
  • He was later cremated and a report was issued claiming the he died from the auto-erotic asphyxiation rather than suicide. 

Visual Representation

  • In 2015, Cleveland Abduction was released which was based on the case of Ariel Castor
  • Kept Woman released in 2015 was also loosely based on this case.
  • The Cleveland Kidnappings documentary was released on Discovery Plus in 2021. 

Reference Link

Ariel Castro- FAQs

Is there a movie based on Ariel Castro?

Cleveland Abduction was released in 2015 was based on the case of Ariel Castor. 
Kept Woman released in 2015 was also loosely based on this case.
In 2021, The Cleveland Kidnappings documentary was released on Discovery Plus. 

How many years did Ariel Castro get?

Castro was charged for rape, kidnappings and aggrevated murder. So, he was given a life imprisonment with 1000 years in prison without any chances of parole. 

How old was Amanda when she had her daughter?

Amanda became pregnant when she was 15 after being captivated by Ariel Castro. She is now 36. 

What is Gina DeJesus doing now?

After escaping from the Castor’s house, she volunteered for the Amber Alert Committee ad had been working for the rescue of the children. 

Did Charles Ramsey get a reward?

Charles was the neighbor who helped Berry in escaping was rewarded with the free burgers for lifetime. 

How old is Gina DeJesus now?

Born on 13 February 1990, DeJesus is currently 32. 

For how long was Amanda kept held by Castor?

She was held captive by Ariel Castro from over 9 years. 

Did Ariel Castro have a daughter?

He has three daughters, namely Arlene Castro, Emily Castro and Angie Castro.