Kidnapping Survivor Shares Wonderful News With Dr. Phil 5 Years After Escaping "House Of Horrors"

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Kidnapping Survivor Shares Wonderful News With Dr. Phil 5 Years After Escaping "House Of Horrors"

Dr. Phil / Andre Welsh-Huggins - AP

There are some news stories that stay with you forever, and Ariel Castro's kidnappings are one of them for me.

I still remember where I was when I first heard the news:

A woman had kicked through the door of a typical suburban home in Cleveland, Ohio.

Ariel Castro house.
Ariel Castro's home - now demolished.THD3 - Wikimedia

She revealed that she had been held captive there with two other women for more than a decade, and had only escaped by a stroke of luck.

Five years later, the women who escaped from bus driver Ariel Castro's house of horrors are slowly recovering from his torture.

"I got some really good news for you..."

Michelle Knight Dr. Phil
Michelle Knight will appear on 'Dr. Phil' later this month.Dr. Phil

One of the women who escaped from the house, Michelle Knight, has been a frequent guest on Dr. Phil over the last five years.

Knight, who now goes by the name Lillian Rose Lee, is all smiles in the promo for her latest segment on the talk show.

"It's so good to see you," she tells Dr. Phil. "I got some really good news for you."

The host tells her not to wait any time, and the crowd applauds as Knight announces, "I'm married!"

Michelle Knight Dr. Phil
Knight married a man identified only as Miguel in 2015.Dr. Phil

TMZ reports that Knight has been married to her husband, a 39-year-old named Miguel, for the past two years, but has kept the marriage a secret.

We'll have to wait until April 24 to see Knight's full interview, but this is great news considering everything she's been through.

Abducted by a family friend

In her memoir Finding Me, Knight revealed that her kidnapper was a father of one of her friends.

Ariel Castro mugshot.
Ariel Castro's mugshot.Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department

Ariel Castro lured Knight into his home by offering her a car ride, then trapped her in his basement for 11 years.

At the time, Knight was a 20-year-old single mother, who was trying to get back custody of her two-year-old son.

She became the first of three women Castro abducted between 2002 and 2004.

And as their descriptions of life inside Castro's "house of horrors" reveal, surviving from day to day was a real challenge...

The house of horrors

Castro's neighbors say they had no idea that anyone else was living in his home.

The bus driver kept his victims chained up in his basement.

Ariel Castro home model.
A model of Castro's home from his trial. His victims were chained up in the basement.Tony Dejak / AP

During their time in his house, all three women - Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry, and Gina DeJesus - say they were sexually assaulted and abused by Castro.

Knight wrote in Finding Me that her abductor would taunt her over and over, saying "You are a person with no meaning."

Ariel Castro house alarm.
A homemade alarm system guarding one of the doors in Castro's home.ABC Action News

She also says that Castro laughed at news reports about his victim's families, telling Knight that no one was looking for her.

Throughout the ordeal, the women kept their spirits up by singing to each other and watching TV shows like The Vampire Diaries.

They only managed to escape in 2011, when Castro left the home's front door unlocked.

Angel Cordero and Charles Ramsey.
Castro's neighbors - Angel Cordero and Charles Ramsey - rushed to rescue Amanda Berry.WEWSTV / ABC

Amanda Berry shouted to Castro's neighbors through the home's screen door, and they helped kick it down so she could escape.

In her dramatic 911 call, Berry told the dispatcher:

Help me, I've been kidnapped, and I've been missing for 10 years. And I'm here. I'm free now!

Starting their lives from scratch

Castro was charged with more than 900 crimes, including hundreds of counts of rape and kidnapping.

Ariel Castro trial.
Castro during his sentencing.Aaron Josefczyk - Reuters

After being sentenced to life without chance for parole, the kidnapper took his own life just a month into his prison sentence.

Incredibly, Knight says that she learned to forgive Castro in time, "because he's a human being."

Since their escape, the three survivors have been slowly rebuilding their lives - apparently including falling in love and tying the knot, in Knight's case.

Just like these brave women, the 13 children who escaped from their own "house of horrors" earlier this year are adjusting to life in the real world.

"The magnificent 13"

Like Ariel Castro's unassuming Cleveland home, the house belonging to David and Louise Turpin was exposed as an alleged prison earlier this year.

Turpin family home.
The Turpin family home.Mike Blake - Reuters

Police say the couple from Perris, California kept their 13 children - aged between two and 29 years old - in conditions that  police called "squalid."

The children were allegedly chained to their beds for months at a time, sometimes with food and toys placed just out of reach.

Turpin family.
In this Facebook photo the Turpins are all smiles, but police say the children were badly abused.David Turpin - Facebook

Investigators say that the children were made to sleep all day and stay up at night - possibly to hide their abuse from neighbors.

The Turpins have been charged with 42 crimes so far, and have pleaded not guilty to all of them.

David and Louise Turpin.Riverside County Sheriff's Department

But police say they have plenty of video recording, audio tapes, and journals kept by the children which they plan to submit as evidence.

Meanwhile, the Turpin children are learning about the world outside of their homes for the first time.

Local news has dubbed them "the magnificent 13," to remind all of us that they are survivors, not victims.

A world of firsts

For now, the seven adult children between 18 and 29 years old have been separated from their younger siblings.

Turpin family.
David Turpin - Facebook

While the older Turpins are living together rural California, their younger ones are being looked after by foster parents.

But all of the Turpin children are enjoying their many "firsts."

They tasted their first ice cream sundaes, had Mexican food for the first time, watched the Harry Potter movies, and enjoyed decorating their rooms.

"They are looking forward to going out to restaurants and stores and movies and going to shops and for walks and all those things," their lawyer Jack Osborn said.

Congratulations to Michelle Knight! Our thoughts and prayers are with all of these survivors.

[H/T: Daily Mail, People, ABC News, CNN]

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