The suspect in a rape and abduction of a Falls woman found chained in the basement of a home on Sunday was caught around 7:30 p.m. Monday in a field in the area of 24th Street and Allen Avenue off of Buffalo Avenue.
Members of the U.S. Marshals Task Force located Michael Ciskiewic, 25, of Monroe Avenue. He had been hanging around in the area, according to Niagara Falls Detective Captain Kelly Rizzo.
Ciskiewic has been charged with first-degree kidnapping, first-degree burglary, first-degree rape, second-degree assault and second-degree menacing. He’s expected to be arraigned in Niagara Falls City Court on Tuesday.
“Even better news,” Rizzo told a gathering of reporters Monday night was that the victim in the case was released from Erie County Medical Center about 6:30 p.m. Monday and is staying with a relative. Rizzo said he was “pleasant surprised” with the news when he contacted a family member about the arrest of Ciskiewic.
The 25-year-old was being sought by federal and state authorities for the assault of the woman who was then chained up in the basement of a Monroe Avenue house.
Police have been unable to determine a motive, Superintendent Thomas Licata said. Initial inquiries into the matter indicate the suspect had no apparent relationship to the victim, he added.
"He may have done some yard work for her," Licata said.
Rizzo said they lived a few houses a way from each other in the neighborhood.
The incident began about 1 a.m. Sunday when officers were called to 3070 Monroe Ave. for a report of an assault involving a woman. Responding officers could not locate a victim at the time.
Rizzo said Monday that the attack happened when she answered the door for Ciskiewic.
“She was familiar with him to open the door, even at that late hour it seemed odd that he would be there but I think she felt comfortable enough … she probably wanted to see if he was OK and the attack happened as soon as she opened the door.”
Rizzo said the woman made it a point to let investigators know she fought back.
“There was a pretty big fight,” Rizzo said. “She’s pretty tough. She fought back.
"She’s continuing to fight. Not only is she out of the hospital sooner than we thought, we know she’s going to be a good witness in this case.”
Later Sunday, Rizzo said Falls police began receiving calls from family members of the woman who they said was missing. Police responded to investigate and eventually used a blood hound to track the woman. She was located a few houses away. Officers found blood leading up to the back door, Rizzo said, breached the door and found the victim chained up in the basement.
Falls Police Criminal Investigation Division Detective Lt. John Conti said the woman was chained by the ankle, had her wrists bound by tape and had a sock stuffed in her mouth.
Police described the home as “cluttered” and worked quickly to get the woman to safety. The home was then surrounded and a roughly 12-hour standoff began.
It was determined that he was not in the home after officers broke the home’s windows and used CO2 gas in an effort to end the standoff. Niagara Falls Detective Captain Kelly Rizzo said because of the use of gas, police will need a day or so before they can enter the house to collect any evidence.