CLEVELAND – Three young Ohio women freed two months ago from a decade of captivity in the home of a former school bus driver spoke publicly for the first time since their ordeal in a video released early on Tuesday thanking supporters and loved ones.
The video was filmed last week in the offices of the law firm managing a trust fund established for the three women, who took turns in separate appearances before the camera to express gratitude for donations to the fund and for a chance to rebuild their lives.[youtube_sc url=”http://youtu.be/oG0WePdZoxg”]
Organizers said the Cleveland Courage Fund has grown to more than $1 million as of July 2, with over 9,200 individuals making contributions.
The 3 1/2-minute long video (http://ow.ly/mL5vb) marked the first sustained glimpse of all three women – Amanda Berry, 27, Gina DeJesus, 23, and Michelle Knight, 32 – since they were rescued on May 6.
Ariel Castro, fired last fall from his job as a Cleveland school bus driver, has been charged with kidnapping the three victims between 2002 and 2004 and brutalizing them while holding them captive in his house over the next 10 years.