Houston man rescued from captivity in squalid garage has died

Reuters News
Posted: Jul 30, 2013 9:11 PM

By Brendan O'Brien

(Reuters) - One of three men rescued from a filthy, converted garage in Houston where they were held captive and forced to hand over their veterans' benefit checks has died, police said on Tuesday.

William Greenawalt, 79, died on Thursday, six days after being rescued from a locked room with a barred door and windows. The room did not have a toilet or beds, police said.

The two other men, ages 59 and 64, were released from the hospital and into the care of an adult protective services agency, police said.

Walter Jones, 31, has been charged with two counts of causing serious bodily injury to the elderly.

Jones is suspected of luring the men to the house with promises of beer and cigarettes and then holding them against their will and forcing them to hand over their benefit checks.

Police said the men provided conflicting accounts about how long they have been at the house.

The discovery comes more than two months after three women were freed from a decade of imprisonment in a Cleveland, Ohio, house. In that case, Ariel Castro, a former school bus driver, pleaded guilty to abducting the women and starving, beating and sexually assaulting them. He also pleaded guilty to murder for causing one of the women to miscarry.

He faces life in prison without parole plus 1,000 years under a plea agreement reached with prosecutors. His sentencing is scheduled for Thursday.

(Reporting by Brendan O'Brien in Milwaukee; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)