Three women believed to have been abducted years ago have
been found alive at a Cleveland house a short distance from
where at least two of them were last seen, and police say a
school bus driver has been arrested in connection with their
A neighbour in the community said he was alerted to their
presence by screams from the house and rushed to the dwelling
where he found the women, one of whom used his cellphone to
"Help me! I'm Amanda Berry. I've been kidnapped and I've been
missing for 10 years and I'm here. I'm free now," Berry is
heard frantically telling a 911 emergency operator in a
recording of the call, released by police and posted on the
website of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
During the call, she gave the name of her alleged abductor
and said he was "out of the house."
All three women have since been taken to a hospital, where
they were reported to be in good medical condition, police
Growing crowds on the street where the women were found
cheered as police cars drove into the cordoned-off area.
The three women were identified by police as Gina DeJesus,
Amanda Berry and Michelle Knight. Police said in a twitter
posting that the three were "alive, talking, appeared to be
Local media have reported that Berry vanished in 2003 and
DeJesus in 2004 when they were teenagers. CNN reported that
Knight disappeared in 2000 at the age of 20.
Local television station WKYC reported that one of the women
was seen holding a baby, but reports that there were children
in the home with the three women could not immediately be
Police identified the suspect as Ariel Castro, 52, a bus
driver for Cleveland public schools.
His uncle, Caesar Castro, who owns a grocery store on the
same street, said his nephew owned the house where the women
were found. He added that members of his family and the
family of DeJesus "grew up together."
"Everyone is shocked," said the elder Castro. He said he had
known his nephew to be "a good guy" and a musician who played
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson said, "I am thankful that
Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight have been
He added, "We have many unanswered questions regarding this
case, and the investigation will be ongoing. Again, I am
thankful that these three young ladies are found and alive."