Kidnap victim Berry back at family home

2013-05-08 18:59

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Cleveland - US kidnap victim Amanda Berry arrived at her sister's house on Wednesday for an emotional reunion with her family a decade after she became one of three local women to be kidnapped.

Television images of the rear of the home showed someone carrying a small child, thought to be the 6-year-old daughter Berry bore during her time as a prisoner of three suspected kidnappers in a nondescript house in Cleveland, Ohio.

Shortly after an SUV with darkened windows arrived at the family residence, bedecked in balloons and banners and surrounded by well wishers and reporters, Berry's sister Beth Serrano emerged to make a brief statement.

"I want to thank the public and media for their support and courage over the years. At this time our family would request privacy so my sister and niece and I can have time to recover," she told a thicket of microphones and lenses.

"We appreciate all you have done for us throughout the past ten years. Please respect our privacy until we are ready to make our statements. And thank you," she added, before breaking down in tears.

The other women rescued along with Berry and her daughter were Gina DeJesus, 23, and Michelle Knight, 32. All three had been kidnapped in separate incidents.

The occupant of the house, a 52-year-old former school bus driver of Puerto Rican origin, Ariel Castro, has been detained, along with his brothers, Pedro, 54, and Onil, 50.

When Berry's car drove up, Jessica Duna, a 50-year-old housekeeper who lives in neighbourhood, said: "Oh my God, it just stopped my heart. It's just sad that her mother isn't here right now. Its heartbreaking."

Posters hanging on the home's front verandah, surrounded by flowers and balloons, declared: "We never lost hope Mandy" and "Welcome home."

Read more on:    us  |  abductions

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