Michelle Knight was the only victim who spoke at the hearing:
Ariel Castro, I remember all the times you came home … and talked about other things and said at least I didn’t kill you. You took 11 years of my life away and I have got it back. I spent 11 years in hell and now your hell is just beginning. I will overcome this. From this moment on, I won’t let this affect me. I will live and you will die a little every day as you think about it.
Russo scolded Castro for claiming he was a victim: “You are a victimizer.” He said Castro should not receive anything other than consecutive sentences for the multiple charges: “You are too dangerous.”
Judge Russo sentenced him to lifetime incarceration without the possibility of parole on the murder charge. He then began the agonizing process of reading the hundreds of rape, kidnapping, and sexual predator charges and sentenced Castro to hundreds of years of incarceration.
In imposing consecutive lifetime sentences that amount to 1000 years to life, Russo said, “The harm is so unusual in a completely negative sense that you took three young women out of the significant relationships they had with their families and their community at a time in their lives and you treated them like slaves, as if they were not people, like they were sex objects.”