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Ariel Castro committed suicide, blamed victims and porn addiction for crimes, new report says

By Daniel S Levine,

Ariel Castro, the Cleveland man convicted of holding three women captive for nearly a decade in his home before they escaped in May, did commit suicide, a new independent report out Tuesday confirms. The report states that he did not die during a sexual act.

The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction had hired consultants Lindsay M. Hayes and Fred Cohen to investigate prison suicides, including Castro’s death, which happened less than a month after he was sentenced to life in prison, plus 1,000 years. According to The LA Times, they looked at 32 cases of suicide in the Ohio prison system since 2009. The report notes that there were 10 suicides in 2013.

Castro was found dead in his cell on Sept. 3, hanging with his pants down. Officials at the prison didn’t know what this meant, according to the report, and handed the case to the Ohio State Highway Patrol “for consideration of the possibility of autoerotic asphyxiation.”

However, the investigators disagreed with this, noting that evidence in his cell showed that he intended to hang himself. That evidence included a Bible with family photos. “In conclusion, based upon the fact that this inmate was going to remain in prison for the rest of his natural life under the probability of continued perceived harassment and threats to his safety, his death was not predictable on September 3, 2013, but his suicide was not surprising and perhaps inevitable,” the report reads.

The Columbus Dispatch notes that the investigators also looked at Castro’s final days after his conviction. They quoted a prison mental health clinician, who said that Castro was “oblivious to the realities of his future situation, and is incredulous that the media and other inmates should treat him so poorly.”

The report also notes that Castro began writing a diary five days after he entered prison with themes that “...concerned the behavior of some correctional staff and an obsession regarding the quality of food.” In addition, he believed his victims were also to blame for his crimes and attributed his actions to a pornography addiction.

The three women he held captive - Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus - have slowly begun to appear in public. They have all signed book deals to tell their stories.

 
 

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