Ossining, N.Y. - (WALK) John Esposito, the man who kept 9-year-old Katie Beers captive for 17 days in an underground bunker in Bay Shore 21 years ago, is dead of "natural causes," related to a heart condition, according to the Westchester County officials Friday.
Esposito, 64, was found dead in his prison cell at Sing Sing in Ossining, N.Y. Wednesday afternoon. The cause of his death was stenosing coronary artery disease, aka hardening of the arteries," according to a report by the Westchester County medical examiner's office.
Espotito was serving a prison term of 15-years-to-life for abducting then-nine-year-old Katie Beers in a home-made dungeon at his home in Bay Shore in 1992. Beers, now 30, says Esposito beat and sexually abused her during the 17 days of her captivity. She was rescued in January of 1993.
Esposito died just hours after appearing before a state parole board. It was not publicized Thursday if the board had reached a decision about whether or not to grant him parole.
In a strange matter of timing, Esposito died hours after kidnapper Ariel Castro took his own life by hanging himself in his prison cell Tuesday night in Ohio. Castro had abuducted three women, and held them captive at his home in Cleveland for ten years.
Beers recently published a book about her experience, and is reportedly a married mother of two living in Pennsylvania.