Update: Missing Girls Safe Return May 7, 2013 8:00pm

The Cleveland Division of Police is committed to providing up to date information regarding the safe return of Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry and Georgina DeJesus. This will be the last update of the evening as the Joint Information Center will be standing down between midnight and 6 a.m. The JIC will be activated again at 6:00 a.m. We do not anticipate any breaking news overnight. However, media can monitor @CLEPolice in the event that news does break.

Reminder: Media are encouraged to confirm reports from unofficial sources prior to presenting information to the public. For example, we have received multiple media inquiries regarding reports of naked women and women in chains at the Seymour home. Upon researching our call intake system extensively, only two calls for service from police are shown at that address. One call was from the resident, Ariel Castro, reporting a fight in the street. The second call was in relation to an incident regarding Ariel Castro and his duties as a bus driver. Police investigated the possibility that Castro had left a child unattended on a school bus. The investigation included an interview with Castro; however, officers did not enter the home. No charges were filed in that incident.

At this time, there have not been charges filed against the males arrested. All three males remain in police custody in the Central Prison Unit at Cleveland Police Headquarters. 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.

Call-taker’s Handling of 9-1-1 Call From Amanda Berry

On behalf of Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson, I want to thank you for taking the time to express your concerns about our public safety call-taking process. The actions of the 9-1-1 call-taker who received an emergency call from Amanda Berry on Monday, May 6 are under review.

While the call-taker complied with policies and procedures which enabled a very fast response by police, we have noted some concerns which will be the focus of our review, including the call-takerโ€™s failure to remain on the line with Ms. Berry until police arrived on scene. Please be assured that this matter will be investigated, and if necessary, appropriate corrective action taken.

I would like to note that the call-taker did take the call, create an event and send it to the channel dispatcher in less than 90 seconds. Within 1 minutes and 18 seconds from the time that the call-taker answered the call our dispatcher was broadcasting the assignment to available police units. As a result of the call-takerโ€™s actions, police were dispatched and on scene in less than 2 minutes.

-Director Martin L. Flask, Cleveland Department of Public Safety

Update regarding Safe Return of Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight- 5/7/13 4:10PM

Earlier today, Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson, Public Safety Director Martin Flask, Chief of Police Michael McGrath, Deputy Chief Ed Tomba, and Special Agent in Charge of the Cleveland FBI Office Stephen Anthony held a press conference to give an update on the safe return of Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight.

Three suspects are currently in Cleveland Police custody awaiting charges to be filed. They are brothers, Ariel Castro, 52; Onil Castro, 50; and Pedro Castro, 54. By mandate, charges are expected within 36 hours of arrest. A search warrant is currently being executed at 2207 Seymour with other locations pending.

We understand the need for continuous information; we are trying to get information to media as fast as we can. We ask that media refrain from speculation and reporting based on unconfirmed information.
Law enforcement is grateful for all those in the neighborhood who responded to help Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight, including Charles Ramsey who called 911 to alert Police. The support of the community is critically important to all that law enforcement does.

We continue to ask the community to send tips and information โ€“ to say something if you see something. We cannot do this alone.

Please, report any suspicious activity to 1-877-OHS-INTEL. For the cases involving Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight specifically, please call the Cleveland Office of the FBI at 216-522-1400.

Investigation Update

The City of Cleveland Department of Public Safety held a press conference this morning, updating the community on the status of the Amanda Berry, Georgina DeJesus and Michelle Knight kidnapping investigations. Yesterday, May 6, 2013, at just before 6pm, Cleveland Police radio received a call that our community had waited over a decade to receive, the call that Amanda Berry was alive, and amazingly Georgina DeJesus and Michelle Knight were with her. Amanda Berry had bravely sought to escape her captor’s home and was assisted by a neighbor in breaking through the bottom of the front door to the home. She escaped along with her young daughter.

Martin Flask, Director of Public Safety reported that Cleveland Police Officers arrived on scene in just under two minutes after being dispatched, and shortly thereafter confirmed that they had located Amanda. Just moments later, police located Georgina and Michelle.

In his remarks, Chief McGrath rejoiced in reporting that finding these women truly gives police officers a boost. This is a moment that many officers and agents have waited many years for. Chief McGrath stated that the Cleveland Division of Police, along with our law enforcement partners, remained committed to these cases over the years. He chronicled the investigations by noting the many leads that had been followed resulting in suspects being ruled out, evidence examined and yards excavated.

Three men are currently under arrest in regards to this investigation. The men, who are brothers, are Ariel Castro, Pedro Castro and Onil Castro. These individuals are currently being held in the City of Cleveland Central Prision Unit awaiting charges.

During the press conference, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Cleveland Office, Steven Anthony, remarked, “Prayers have finally been answered, the nightmare is finally over”. He further stated that the families of these ladies never gave up and neither did law enforcement. Deputy Chief Edward Tomba commanded the attention of those in the room when he stated “The real hero here is Amanda. Without her lead, we would not be here.”

The next steps will include sorting through ten years of logistical information, interviews being conducted and evidence examined. The Federal Bureau of Investigation remains in partnership with the Cleveland Division of Police and has provided the assistance of the Evidence Response Team which will examine all evidence at the crime scene.

While the community rejoices in knowing that these missing women are now safe and reunited with their families, it is important to recognize the extremely difficult and painful journey they will face on the road to recovery. As we offer our thoughts and prayers to these women, we must also respect their right to privacy and their right to heal in their own time. While many questions remain, the most important thing is the mental and physical well being of these brave women. Please join us in wishing them well on their road to healing.