Why Did He Do It? Ft. Wayne Psychiatrist Weighs In On Castro Suicide

By Jeff Neumeyer

September 4, 2013 Updated Sep 4, 2013 at 5:26 PM EDT

OHIO (www.incnow.tv) --- It was a bizarre story that now has a bizarre ending.

Ariel Castro, who was sentenced to life plus 1,000 years for kidnapping and raping three women, hanged himself in prison Tuesday night.

What made him do it?

A Fort Wayne psychiatrist we spoke with says sorting that out is no easy task.

It is certainly difficult to understand what prompted Castro’s criminal behavior in the first place.

Dr. Jay Fawver says we can only speculate why the Cleveland man took his own life.

Part of that is because there are several valid reasons why he might end it all.

Castro caused us all to shake our heads in disbelief when it came to light that he'd abducted three women and held them captive in his home for about a decade, forcing them to submit to untold sex acts against their will.

Fort Wayne had its own high-profile prison suicide.

Simon Rios hanged himself in the Pendleton Correctional facility in 2008, after the Fort Wayne man pleaded guilty to life in prison for killing 8-year old Alejandra Gutierrez and members of his own family.

Dr. Fawver recognizes it's natural to assume feelings of guilt got the best of Castro, but he wonders if the inmate's gloomy circumstances behind bars are more to blame.

" They have a sense of hopelessness, they not only might be reflecting on their past, but they might have apprehensions about the future, and you know, in his case, he might have not liked what he might have perceived was going to happen in the future for him and that might have had something to do with it," Dr. Fawver said.

Indeed, it’s not clear if guilt had anything to do with Castro’s suicide.

Some of his statements during his criminal proceeding suggest he wanted to lay blame on his victims for what happened.

He accused the victims of lying about their treatment, said that they actually wanted sex, and that there was harmony in his household.

He was kept in protective custody, away from other inmates, but it’s possible he still was fearful for his own safety in prison.

Fawver says inmates who are held for sexual offenses and physical offenses toward children or women often don’t do very well in interacting with other prisoners, and that he might have foreseen trouble down the road.

Indeed, mass murderer Jeffrey Dahmer was killed years ago while he was locked up in prison.

Ohio’s corrections department is promising that a thorough review of Castro’s death will be carried out.

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