TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - A father and son were arrested after a 13-year-old girl claimed she was held captive in a Toledo home for more than a year.
Timothy Ciboro, 53, and Esten Ciboro, 27, were arrested early Thursday morning at a home on Noble Street in north Toledo.
The girl said she had run away from home because her step-father chained her up in the basement. She managed to escape when the two men left the home to go on a run.
Lt. Joe Heffernan with the Toledo Police Department says the girl told police she was looking for a relative of her mother, Stafonda Hawkins, 39, when the two women found her.
"Fortunately, she ran into the right person, a good Samaritan, and she made all the right moves and called us," said Heffernan.
When asked by police where her mother was, the girl said she was in Las Vegas.
The girl told police that Esten is her step-brother and that she lives in the home with him and his father, along with her two siblings.
The father and son allegedly kept the girl shackled, by the ankle, to a support beam in the basement of the home for more than a year. She told police she was fed spoiled and old scraps of food and forced to go to the bathroom in a bucket.
Officials say the girl did not appear to be malnourished when she was found.
The girl also told police that she had not been to school since the first grade.
When crews arrived at the home, Timothy and Esten, along with two other children and two pets were leaving in a van. Police say it appears they were fleeing.
Inside the van, officers found a gun and a map to Oakwood, Ohio. Both adults were uncooperative and refused to let police in the home.
Once a search warrant was obtained, police found a large set of handcuffs chained to a support beam in the basement.
Officers also found the ammonia-filled bucket that the girl said she was forced to go to the bathroom in.
Both Timothy and Esten Ciboro were arrested that night. They were officially charged with kidnapping and endangering children in Toledo Municipal Court Thursday morning. Both are being held on $500,000 bonds.
WTOL 11 learned from police that Timothy is also a former Toledo firefighter.
Fire Chief Luis Santiago says Ciboro was sworn in in 1996, terminated in 2000, reinstated in 2001, and then fired again three years later in 2004. The Chief says Ciboro had a history of causing trouble in the department. A list of disciplinary problems include failing to obey orders, being late to work by two hours, and falsifying reports or statements.
"(Was he a good employee?) Obviously not," said Santiago. "We had our share of disciplinary challenges and issues with him throughout the years. He started on the job in, again, in '96, and we're looking at a termination in the year 2000, so he wasn't here that long. But again, he certainly had his share of disciplinary issues that not only the fire department, but the city had to deal with. "
Chief Santiago says he knew Ciboro on a professional, but not a personal level and declined to comment on Thursday's allegations, saying it's a very, very serious crime that has to go through due process.
Neighbors in the area are shocked at the claims, and say they had no idea what was happening on their street.
One neighbor says everything appeared normal at the home. The Ciboro's had been her neighbors for about 15 years.
She says she never had any problems with them, so she was shocked when she learned what Timothy and Esten Ciboro were accused of.
She says she often saw all three children that lived at the home outside, but they were never alone. Timothy and Esten were always there. But then she says she stopped seeing the teenage girl.
"I did see the other two smaller kids and his other son coming and going all the time, but I never saw her anymore. It makes me feel sick, very sick about that, that you're right here in the neighborhood and have no idea that something like that is going on," the neighbor said."When we didn't see her anymore, we just figured she must've gone to her other parents or something. We just never expected that; I never expected anything like that. I have raised six children in this house and it's kind of scary, it's really scary."
Officials with Lucas County Children Services say the last contact the office had with the family was in 2014, when a neighbor reported seeing one of the children eating a french fry that had been thrown in the trash. The family apparently has a strict rule against fast food.
The children were found to not be malnourished, and the investigation ended before any of them were removed from the home.
"Children in abusive or neglectful situations, a lot of times they're traumatized, and it takes time for them to open up and be able to tell us what has happened," said Robin Reese, LCCS.
The child's mother, Stafonda Hawkins, is believed to have been gone before the 2014 incident. She has since been booked in the Lucas County Jail for a probation violation from 2009 after she left Ohio and reportedly began a life in Las Vegas.
All three children who lived in the home are now in foster care, but due to safety and security reasons, it's unknown if they are with the same family or if they have been separated.
Both Timothy and Esten Ciboro remain behind bars at the Lucas County Jail.