EXCLUSIVE PHOTO: Amanda Berry, her sister Beth Serrano and Amanda's daughter
Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus
Ariel Castro, Onil Castro and Pedro Castro (Source:CPD)
Loved ones decorate Amanda Berry's sister's home
Growing celebration outside of the DeJesus home
CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -
Police have yet to charge the three brothers accused in Cleveland's most high-profile kidnapping case in years.
All three men - Ariel Castro, Onil Castro and Pedro Castro - remain in police custody. Although the usual protocol between the Cleveland Division of Police and the Cleveland Municipal Court is that detectives file charges within 36 hours, Administrative Judge Ronald B. Adrine has extended the charging period in this case to 48 hours, which is within the federal mandate for charging time.
Meantime, more details are emerging about the lives of three women held captive in a west side Cleveland house for years.
According to 19 Action News Reporter Lydia Esparra, Gina DeJesus knew the man suspected of kidnapping her and holding her captive for nearly 10 years.
Family members tell Esparra that Ariel Castro was a relative of DeJesus' best friend, possibly her father.
He's also been to at least two vigils for the missing girls.
Amanda Berry and her daughter Jocelyn, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight were found in a house on Seymour Avenue Monday afternoon. Berry was heard by a neighbor screaming for help. The neighbor, Charles Ramsey, helped free Berry and a young girl, 6, believed to be Berry's daughter.
Berry then called 911 begging for help.
"Help me, I'm Amanda Berry. I've been kidnapped and I've been missing for ten years and I'm here. I'm free now."
Officers arrived to the scene within two minutes of getting the call, and recovered Berry and the little girl. DeJesus and Knight then came out of the home.
Berry went missing in 2003 a day shy of her 17th birthday. DeJesus disappeared as she walked home from school in 2004 at the age of 14. Knight went missing in 2002 at the age of 20.
"Words cannot describe the emotion," said FBI Special Agent Stephen Anthony. "Yes, law enforcement officers do cry."
"Prayers have been answered," he added. "The nightmare is finally over and the healing can begin."
Multiple sources confirm two of the women were often held in the basement, and one woman in a room upstairs. Law enforcement sources have told 19 Action News that one of the rooms had chains hanging from the ceiling.
Reporter Ed Gallek also learned that one woman told police she had gotten pregnant more than once, but her captor beat her and she ended up losing the babies.
Former CMSD school bus driver Ariel Castro, 52, and his brothers, Pedro, 54, and Onil, 50, are in police custody. Charges are forthcoming.
Police were called to Castro's west side home two times - once in 2000 for a fight in the street and again in 2004 after Castro inadvertently left a child on his school bus. Nothing criminal came of that investigation.
"Amanda Berry is the real hero," said Deputy Chief Ed Tomba. "She is the one that got this rolling. Without her, none of us would be here today."
Neighbors on Seymour have been captivated by the story unfolding before their eyes.
"Unless they built some sort of dungeon I cannot believe someone did not notice something," one neighbor said.
Maria Castro Montes is only too sorry that the accused kidnappers are her cousins, who she says have shamed the family name, "Our pain is minimal compared to the pain of those girls."
Media from around the world have come to tell the story as well.
Thursday, April 24 2014 9:50 PM EDT2014-04-25 01:50:44 GMT
SURFSIDE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – A WMBF News crews saw authorities remove a car from a Walmart parking lot after responding to a shoplifting incident. Authorities arrested the shoplifting suspect at the WalmartMore >>
A WMBF News crews saw authorities remove a car from a Walmart parking lot after responding to a shoplifting incident.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 9:47 PM EDT2014-04-25 01:47:03 GMT
FLORENCE, SOUTH CAROLINA (WMBF) Florence County said buying four new fire trucks is going to lower taxes. Improve response times and make up for a lack of manpower. The Olanta Fire Station is gettingMore >>
Council members of Florence County said buying four new fire trucks is going to lower taxes. Improve response times and make up for a lack of manpower.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 9:44 PM EDT2014-04-25 01:44:45 GMT
MURRELLS INLET, SC (WMBF) - A HAZMAT situation is underway at Wachesaw Plantation East on Riverwood Drive. Several emergency crews are on the scene working to assess the situation, according to Gary MocarskiMore >>
Five patients were transported to area hospitals after too much chlorine leaked into a pool at Wachesaw Plantation East on Riverwood Drive. More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 8:59 PM EDT2014-04-25 00:59:27 GMT
MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The head of Coast RTA has been running the area's only mass transit system for nearly 10 years now. And for nearly 10 years, he has had to endure the wrath from an army of criticsMore >>
After 10 years as CEO of Coast RTA, Myers Rollins points to a significant financial and operational turnaround under his tenure, while critics lambaste him for several missteps. WMBF investigated the controversy brewing at the Coast RTA to see who's getting thrown "Under the Bus"More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 8:44 PM EDT2014-04-25 00:44:32 GMT
DILLON COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – A convenience store clerk was murdered Monday night during an apparent robbery on Highway 9 East in Dillon County, officials confirmed. The clerk was closing the 20/20 ConvenientMore >>
A Dillon man has been arrested in connection to the convenience store robbery that happened Monday. More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 8:35 PM EDT2014-04-25 00:35:44 GMT
MONDAY AT 11PM – A local teenager disappeared last summer – but it was not without a trace. "When I found that car, I knew right then he was gone," said the grandfather of Zachary Malinowski, the AynorMore >>
Tune in to WMBF News on Monday at 11 p.m. as we uncover new details in the search for Zachary Malinowski.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 7:46 PM EDT2014-04-24 23:46:29 GMT
GALIVANTS FERRY, SC (WMBF) - A helicopter is en route to a burn victim on Highway 129. The victim was refueling a lawn mower and suffers injuries from a flash fire, according to Scott Thompson with HorryMore >>
A helicopter is en route to a burn victim on Highway 129. The victim was refueling a lawn mower and suffers injuries from a flash fire, according to Scott Thompson with HCFR.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 7:13 PM EDT2014-04-24 23:13:24 GMT
TABOR CITY, NC (WECT) - It could be months before the family of a South Columbus High School student knows what lead to the teen's unexpected death. Jaqwan Cephus McGill collapsed at a convenience storeMore >>
It could be months before the family of a South Columbus High School student knows what led to the teen's unexpected death.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 6:41 PM EDT2014-04-24 22:41:26 GMT
HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF)- Memorial Day weekend is fast approaching and with it comes the set deadline for completion of the current widening project happening on Highway 501. Crews are working to widenMore >>
Memorial Day weekend is fast approaching and with it comes the set deadline for completion of the current widening project happening on Highway 501. Crews are working to widen the road from two lanes to three on the inland bound lanes.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 6:32 PM EDT2014-04-24 22:32:05 GMT
Socastee (WMBF) - Standing by her side while she gave her acceptance speech at Wednesday night's Teacher of the Year Gala in Colombia was one of Jennifer Ainsworth's special needs students. "It was soMore >>
Standing by her side while she gave her acceptance speech at Wednesday night's Teacher of the Year Gala in Columbia was one of Jennifer Ainsworth's students with special needs.