NRL News

Prosecutor seeks to indict Ariel Castro for aggravated murder for each of five unborn babies who died when he allegedly starved and beat their mother

by | May 10, 2013

By Dave Andrusko

Timothy McGinty, the lead prosecutor in Cuyahoga County, Ohio

Timothy McGinty, the lead prosecutor in Cuyahoga County, Ohio

Having already been arraigned on seven counts of kidnapping and rape, there may be further charges against Ariel Castro.Timothy McGinty, the lead prosecutor in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, said he wants a grand jury to indict Castro for aggravated murder for each of the five unborn babies who died when their mother was allegedly starved and beaten by Castro.

Authorities say Castro induced miscarriages in Michele Knight, 32, on “at least five separate occasions,” according to ABC News.

Ohio is one of 36 states that recognize the unlawful killing of an unborn child as homicide in at least some circumstances. Specifically when an “unborn member of the species homo sapiens, who is or was carried in the womb of another” is killed, it is aggravated murder, murder, voluntary manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter, negligent homicide, aggravated vehicular homicide, or vehicular homicide.

Authorities “will evaluate whether we will seek charges eligible for the death penalty,” McGinty said, according to CNN reporting on Friday. The death penalty is applicable under Ohio law for the “most depraved criminals who commit aggravated murder during the course of a kidnapping,” McGinty said.

NRLC has no position on the death penalty but has led the charge for recognition that when a pregnant woman is attacked and her unborn child is injured or killed, there are two victims. As President George W. Bush said in 2004, in signing the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, “[A]ny time an expectant mother is a victim of violence, two lives are in the balance, each deserving protection, and each deserving justice.”


In addition, CBS News has reported, “Tests have confirmed that alleged kidnapper Ariel Castro is the father of a 6-year-old girl rescued from his house with three women this week, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said Friday.”

Editor’s note. The National Right to Life website contains the most comprehensive collection of resources on the Internet on unborn victims (fetal homicide) laws, including a summary of the 36 state fetal homicide laws, accounts of two-victim crimes, and resources on the legal issues involved.  It’s all found at

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