Ariel Castro No 'Monster': Lawyers

He'll plead not guilty in Cleveland kidnapping case

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted May 15, 2013 6:28 AM CDT

(Newser) – He stands accused of holding three women captive for a decade—two of whom apparently have POW-like injuries—yet Ariel Castro's attorneys insist he's not a bad guy. "The initial portrayal by the media has been one of a 'monster' and that's not the impression that I got when I talked to him for three hours," Craig Weintraub told WKYC-TV. "I know that family members who have been interviewed by the media have expressed that as well." Castro will plead not guilty to all kidnapping and rape charges if he's indicted by a grand jury, the attorneys say, and they may try to get a change of venue to ensure he gets a fair trial.

Castro hasn't confessed anything to Weintraub, the lawyer says, adding that details about how Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, and Michelle Knight ended up in Castro's home "will be disclosed as the case progresses. I am aware of how he came into contact with them." As for the daughter Castro fathered with Berry, "Mr. Castro is extremely committed to the well being and positive future for his daughter, who he loves dearly," says lawyer Jaye Schlachet. "And if people find that to be a disconnect from what he's alleged to have done, then the people will just have to deal with it. We just know how he feels about his little girl."

Ariel Castro appears in Cleveland Municipal court alongside defense attorney Kathleen DeMetz, right, Thursday, May 9, 2013, in Cleveland.   (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
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