National News

Aug 1, 2013 11:53 AM by NBC News

Sentencing hearing reveals horrors carried out by Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro

Prosecutors revealed chilling photos from inside Ariel Castro's Cleveland house of horrors at a sentencing hearing on Thursday, showing a house modified on the inside to keep his captives in and the rest of the world out.

Some of the photos showed the bedroom, including stuffed animals and other children's toys, where captive Amanda Berry and her daughter spent much of their time, FBI Special Agent Andrew Burke said. Others showed chains hanging from walls where two of the women endured their nightmarish captivity.

Handcuffed and in an orange prison jumpsuit, a bearded Castro appeared to smile as he entered the courtroom where he could come face to face again with the three women he has admitted imprisoning for a decade in his Cleveland home.

Asked by the judge whether he would like to speak, Castro said he "would like to apologize to the victims," before saying he would save further comments until later in the hearing.

Prosecutors stood ready to use a model of the confessed kidnapper's house of horrors and diary entries from victims to describe his atrocities at a sentencing hearing on Thursday, as witnesses including police officers and medical experts revealed the terrifying details - including that more than 90 pounds of chains, measuring nearly 100 feet, were recovered from the home.

The judge said the chains would not be displayed in court.

Castro, who pleaded guilty to charges related to his decade-long confinement of the women, stands to get life in prison plus an additional 1,000 years.

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