November 3, 2013

Cleveland house survivor going on ‘Dr. Phil’

Michelle Knight will tell her story Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Associated Press

CLEVELAND — One of three women who escaped from a ramshackle Cleveland home after more than a decade in captivity is about to share her story.

click image to enlarge

Michelle Knight, one of three kidnapped women, reads her statement during the sentencing of her kidnapper, Ariel Castro, in court in Cleveland, Ohio, on Aug. 1.

Reuters

click image to enlarge

Ariel Castro, 53, stands between attorneys Craig Weintraub, left, and Jaye Schlachet as his sentence is read by Judge Michael Russo in the courtroom in Cleveland, Ohio, on Aug. 1. The judge sentenced Castro to life in prison for abducting, raping and holding captive three women for as long as 11 years, and murder for forcing one of the women to abort her pregnancy. Russo imposed the sentence after an emotional court hearing at which one of Castro’s victims, Michelle Knight, 32, said the former school bus driver put her through a life of hell.

Reuters

Michelle Knight will appear on the “Dr. Phil” show Tuesday and Wednesday in a taped interview.

The show says Knight “describes the horrible conditions in the house” and discusses her physical, mental and sexual abuse.

That included “being tied up like a fish” and spending weeks chained and tortured in the basement, according to the show.

Knight, Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus escaped May 6 when Berry pushed out a door and yelled for help.

Their kidnapper, Ariel Castro, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to life in prison. He hanged himself Sept. 3, just weeks into his sentence.

On “Dr. Phil,” Knight will also discuss how she was able to survive her ordeal. She was 20 years old when she was kidnapped in August 2002.

“Three women were taken, three women were rescued, but only two went home,” said Dr. Phil McGraw, referring to Knight’s decision not to reunite with her family.

The Knight interview was announced earlier as three segments but was trimmed.

“Out of respect for Ms. Berry and Ms. DeJesus, she chose to speak about their shared experiences only from her own point of view,” McGraw told The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer in comments published Saturday.

“When you listen to her describe the horrible living conditions and how she was treated, you wonder how anyone lasted a day let alone more than a decade. In the 12 years of doing the ‘Dr. Phil’ show, no one has changed me like Michelle Knight and her story of survival.”

Knight, the only victim to appear at Castro’s sentencing, told him, “You took 11 years of my life away, but I’ve got my life back! I spent 11 years in hell. Now your hell is just beginning.”

McGraw said he found Knight “very bright, well-spoken and eager” to have her own voice after suffering years of abuse.

 

Were you interviewed for this story? If so, please fill out our accuracy form

Send question/comment to the editors




Further Discussion

Here at PressHerald.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • Type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • Exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)