Wednesday, July 31, 2013 at 7:42 PM
Ariel Castro appears in court Thursday to be sentenced for the kidnappings of Amanda Berry, Michelle Knight and Gina DeJesus. ideastream's Nick Castele.
Castro pleaded guilty to 937 counts, including aggravated murder, rape and kidnapping.
The plea agreement with prosecutors takes the death penalty off the table – but it recommends a life sentence without parole, plus 1,000 years.
Judge Michael Russo will still have to accept the recommendation and impose sentence after a hearing scheduled to begin around 9 a.m. and possibly finish by 1 p.m.
On Wednesday, prosecutors released a document outlining their case against Castro. It describes how Castro lured the women into his car, often kept them in restraints in his home and repeatedly abused them.
Joe Frolik, the spokesman for Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty, said McGinty’s presentation in court would paint, in his words, a very clear picture.
“Both to Judge Russo, as he considers his final sentencing decision, as well as to anyone who reviews this decision any time in the future, we want them to have a very clear picture of the impact of these crimes on the victims and on the community," he said.
Castro will have a chance to speak at his sentencing hearing. But of his attorneys, Jaye Schlachet, declined to comment on what the defense planned to present.