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Castro called mother of victim - report

06 September 2013, 18:02

Columbus - Kidnapper Ariel Castro says he called the mother of one of his victims while she was in captivity and told her she was OK, according to a videotaped FBI interrogation.

Castro also told investigators that authorities missed opportunities for capturing him.

The kidnapping and repeated rapes of three young women over about a decade shocked Americans when the women escaped from Castro's home in May.

Castro, 53, was a month into his life sentence for the crimes when he killed himself on Tuesday.

Castro says in the video obtained by NBC and reported on Friday that he called the mother of Amanda Berry and told her that Berry was OK and that she was his wife now.

He said he hung up, and they didn't have a conversation.

Berry's mother died before Berry escaped.

Castro told investigators that video surveillance near the school of victim Gina DeJesus should have tipped police to him.

And he said a girlfriend noticed a TV on in a room occupied by victim Michelle Knight and got him worrying he might be caught.

A message was left with representatives of the victims on Friday morning.

Two state reviews of Castro's death are underway, Ohio prisons spokesperson Jo-Ellen Smith said. One is looking into the suicide, and the other is examining whether Castro received proper medical and mental health care.

A representative of Castro's family had been expected to claim his body on Thursday, the Franklin County coroner said.

Castro was sentenced 1 August to life in prison plus 1 000 years after pleading guilty to 937 counts, including kidnapping and rape, in a deal to avoid the death penalty.

"I'm not a monster. I'm sick," he told the judge at sentencing.

Castro's captives - Berry, DeJesus and Knight - disappeared separately between 2002 and 2004, when they were 14, 16 and 20. They were rescued from Castro's run-down house when Berry broke through a screen door.

Investigators said the women were bound, repeatedly raped and deprived of food and bathroom facilities.

- AP


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