CLEVELAND - During a brief news conference, the attorney for rescued Cleveland women Gina DeJesus, Amanda Berry and Michelle Knight said the women thank everyone for their support but are begging to be left alone, Cleveland ABC affiliate WEWS-TV reports.
Reading a prepared statement, attorney James Wooley said all three women are "extremely grateful" for the love and support of family, friends and the community.
"Thank you so much for everything you’re doing and continue to do," said Amanda's statement. "I’m so happy to be home with my family."
"I'm so happy to be home. I thank everybody for all your prayers. I just want time now to be with my family," Gina's statement said.
"Thank you to everyone for your support and good wishes. I’m healthy, happy and safe and will reach out to family, friends and supporters in good time," Michelle's statement read.
Wooley said none of the women will be participating in media interviews for several reasons, most importantly so they can heal and reconnect with family. Wooley made it clear that they also wouldn't be talking as long as the criminal investigation is ongoing with their alleged captor, Ariel Castro.
"Respect this most basic request: give them time, space and privacy so they can get stronger. There may be a time at some point they will want to tell their stories, but that will not be until they tell us they’re ready and criminal proceedings are over," Wooley explained.
The women were found alive inside a Seymour Avenue home on Cleveland's west side on May 6. Neighbors heard Amanda's cries for help and saved the women, who were held as prisoners and tortured sexually, physically and emotionally for 10 years.
Anyone wanting to make donations to the families and victims can do so via the Cleveland Foundation www.clevelandfoundation.org/courage.