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Prosecutor on Castro deal: "In forever, come out in a box"

11:07 PM, Jul 26, 2013   |    comments
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Video: Prosecutor on Castro deal: 'We gave nothing'

Video: Ariel Castro faces last chance to tell his story at sentencing

Video: Prosecutor McGinty praises courage of survivors

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  • CLEVELAND -- Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty says the plea deal accepted by Ariel Castro represents justice for the women and the community.

    "We gave nothing here," McGinty said in a news conference after the plea hearing. Describing the state's terms in approaching the deal, McGinty said the idea was "In forever, for life. Come out in a box. We want all your money, all your property. ... The only thing he'll have is the orange jumper he's delivered to the penitentiary in."

    Provisions are also in place to ensure Castro cannot profit from his crimes and the state will confiscate any money in excess of $25 that Castro may have in his prison account once he is incarcerated. The state says it will seek restitution, fines and court costs from Castro at the sentencing in addition to prison time.

    Castro pleaded guilty in court Friday morning to an agreement involving more than 900 charges. A sentence of life in prison without parole plus 1,000 years was recommended to the judge. Castro will not face the possibility of execution.

    Judge Michael Russo will sentence Castro in August 1.

    During the plea hearing, Castro was far more alert and talkative than in previous court appearances. He made reference to his "sexual problems," an addiction to porn and referenced that he was a victim as a child.

    The judge told Castro he can speak on his own behalf at the sentencing.

    McGinty, however, said he wasn't buying Castro's victim-claims. "I think he's a coward. He's nowhere near the truth. He's in his own world and it's not a world or remorse or regret. He feels sorry for one person and one person only. Himself. The rest is an act."

    McGinty praised the courage of Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight for being able to outlast Castro. The women were held captive for a decade before escaping and being rescued on May 6. He says although their recovery has been inspiring, there is still a long way for them to go towards healing. The "damage won't disappear with this plea," McGinty said.

    The county says it will use Castro's money to demolish the Seymour Avenue home. The county is trying to acquire adjacent properties as well to give the community a space for a park or a garden. McGinty said how the land is used will be up to the community and says the survivors are excited by the possibility.

    During the hearing, Castro again made reference to missing being able to see Amanda Berry's daughter-a child fathered by him while he held Berry captive. McGinty said there is zero chance Castro will be allowed to see the child.

    "He's the last guy who should have any visitation rights."

    Assistant Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Blaise Thomas says his office will ask a judge at Castro's sentencing next week to impose a standard no-contact order on Castro. His daughter was born Christmas Day 2006 in the Seymour Avenue house where they were all held captive.

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