Kidnapping survivor Michelle Knight expressed her gratitude to Cleveland police in a handwritten note, which police posted to Facebook on Wednesday evening.
Knight, who was held captive for more than 10 years, was the first woman captured by Ariel Castro. He went on to kidnap Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus. Over the course of her imprisonment, Castro allegedly impregnated Knight five times and caused her to miscarry each time by starving and beating her.
Last week, Castro pleaded guilty to 937 counts, including aggravated murder, kidnapping, rape and assault. He will be sentenced on Thursday.
In a video released earlier in this month, all three women broke their silence to thank the community for its support.
Knight reflected poignantly on her harrowing experience, saying she was strong enough to walk through hell with a smile on her face. Her statement, in part:
"I don't want to be consumed by hatred. With that being said, we need to take a leap of faith and know that God is in control. We have been hurt by people, but we need to rely on God as being the judge. God has a plan for all of us. The plan that he gave me was to help others who have been in the same situations I have been in. To know that there is someone out there to lean on, and to talk to.
I am in control of my own destiny, with the guidance of God. I have no problem expressing how I feel inside. Be positive. Learn that it's important to give than to receive. Thank you for all your prayers. I'm looking forward to my brand new life."