CLEVELAND (CNN) — She knew she didn’t have long. He would be back soon. After 10 long years in captivity, this was Amanda Berry’s chance.
She broke out the bottom of a screen door and screamed, startling a neighbor who came over and helped kick in the door. Then, frenzied, panicked, tearful freedom.
“Help me, I am Amanda Berry,” the 27-year-old woman told police in a frantic 911 call from the neighbor’s house. “I’ve been kidnapped, and I’ve been missing for 10 years. And I’m here, I’m free now.”
Cleveland police and the FBI hailed Berry as a hero for her daring escape Monday night that also led to freedom for two other women held inside the house — Georgina “Gina” DeJesus, 23, and Michelle Knight, 32. All three had disappeared close to a decade ago from the same Cleveland neighborhood.
A 6-year-old girl that police said is believed to be Berry’s daughter was also freed.
“We were in disbelief,” said DeJesus’s brother, Ricardo. “We cried. We were shaking. We were just happy.”
Police arrested former school bus driver Ariel Castro, 52, who lived at the house and was identified by Berry on the 911 call. Authorities also picked up his brothers, Pedro Castro, 54, and Onil Castro, 50. All three are jailed pending charges in the case, police said Tuesday.
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