, CHICAGO, August 1 – The US bus driver who kidnapped three young women and tormented them for a decade in his Ohio home insisted as he was sentenced to life without parole Thursday that he was “not a monster.”
In a rambling quasi apology to his three victims, one of whom sat sat stonily in the courtroom, Castro claimed he had acted on impulse as a result of sexual addiction.
Castro had pleaded guilty after prosecutors agreed to take the death penalty off the table in a deal that will see him spend the rest of his life in prison with no chance of parole.
Knight, who was snatched off the street in 2002 at the age of 20, said death would have been “so much easier” for her tormenter.
“I spent 11 years in hell, and now your hell is just beginning,” Knight said.
Castro said that he still couldn’t understand why he held the three women captive, but insisted “there was harmony in that home.”
“I am not a monster. I was sick,” Castro said, insisting he was addicted to sex and pornography.
He also insisted the women were lying when they said he beat them, declaring “I am not a violent person.”
“Most of the sex that went on in the house, probably all of it, was consensual,” Castro claimed.
“There was times they would even ask me for sex, many times. These girls were not virgins.”
More than 92 pounds (42 kilos) of chains were found in the filthy, darkened home where the women were kept in locked rooms with boarded up windows.
Even more horrifying were the stories the thin, pale and bruised women told upon their release.