The announcement amounted to a bombshell. Two brothers — Pedro and Onil Castro — initially arrested and questioned for the decade long kidnapping and terrorizing of three Cleveland women for a decade are not suspects.
“There is no evidence that these two individuals had any involvement in the commission in the crimes committed against Michele, Gina, Amanda, and the minor child,” City of Cleveland Prosecutor Victor Perez told reporters Wednesday afternoon.
This – despite the fact the brothers were arrested alongside Ariel Castro– not far from the home where police say he kept three women captive for a decade.
How could they not know?
It’s the same question investigators in Boston are still pondering as they try to determine if marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s wife, Katherine Russell, knew anything about the planning of his terror plot.
And while she remains free and uncharged – the stigma of being so close to a suspect could follow her for some time.
It is the same quandary the Castro brothers now find themselves in; officially cleared of any criminal involvement in a horrific crime but the public perception of their complete innocence now clouded with skepticism.
David Bryant, freed after serving 38-years in prison for a 1975 Bronx rape and murder he didn’t commit, knows exactly what it’s like living with that stigma.
“It cost me my life. It won’t happen again. It just will not happen again. I refuse to let it happen. They don’t believe you. They just don’t believe you,” Bryant told Pix11.
Meantime, back in Cleveland, you can be certain relatives won’t be letting Amanda Berry out of their sight anytime soon.
The family welcomed her home Wednesday.