Wed., September 4, 2013 11:00am (EDT)

Ariel Castro, Ohio Man Who Held Women For Years, Is Dead
By Doreen McCallister
Updated: 7 months ago

Ariel Castro in court on July 17, 2013.
Ariel Castro in court on July 17, 2013.
Corrections officials in Ohio say convicted Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro is believed to have committed suicide in his cell Tuesday night.

They say he was found hanged around 9:20 p.m. ET at the Correctional Reception Center in Orient, Ohio, a short distance southwest of Columbus.

Castro was serving a life sentence for holding three women captive in his Cleveland home for about a decade.

Officials say medical staff at the prison tried to revive Castro, who was pronounced dead at a hospital around 10:50 p.m. ET.

Castro initially was sent to the Lorain Correctional Institution for processing but later was moved to the prison in Orient for his safety.

In July, Castro pleaded guilty to hundreds of charges including kidnapping and rape. He was sentenced in August to life in prison plus 1,000 years.

Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, Michelle Knight and Berry's 6-year-old daughter were rescued from Castro's home in May. They had disappeared separately between 2002 and 2004.

On Aug. 7, Castro's house was torn down.

"Two local contractors destroyed the house and hauled the debris away, on their own dime," Brian Bull reported for WCPN. "City Councilman Matt Zone said every last shred of Castro's house is going to be pulverized and discarded."

The house was demolished as part of a plea deal that spared Castro from a possible death sentence.

Update at 10:45 a.m. ET. Preliminary Autopsy Indicates Suicide By Hanging, Coroner Says:

"Franklin County coroner Dr. Jan Gorniak said preliminary results of the autopsy confirmed that Castro's death was a suicide and the cause of death was hanging," USA Today reported just after 10:30 a.m. ET. The newspaper adds that "she said toxicology tests would be completed later."


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