Updated: May 24, 2014 6:24AM
Days after Nina Castro filed for divorce from her husband last fall, she returned to their home in Gary’s Ambridge-Mann area where Remanard Castro forced her to have sex with him while threatening her with a handgun and later a crowbar, according to Lake Superior Court records.
They indicate that before she could escape, her husband told her the divorce “was not going to be pretty and that the kids were going to suffer.”
On Monday afternoon, Remanard Castro shot and killed his estranged wife outside their 14-year-old son’s Catholic school in Griffith while their son and 16-year-old daughter watched, Griffith police said.
He then fled to his home at 626 Roosevelt St., Gary, and shot himself in the head as Gary police approached. He died at the Methodist Hospitals Northlake Campus.
In February, Castro, 55, was charged with rape and criminal confinement for the Nov. 23 assault on his wife. He posted 10 percent of his $90,000 bail shortly after his arrest, court records show. His next court date was to be May 2.
Despite the alleged sexual assault, court records do not indicate that Nina Castro sought a protective order.
On the day of the rape, she went to the Roosevelt Street address to retrieve some belongings, Castro demanded sex and she refused, Gary police said. They said he then pulled a handgun from under a pillow and pointed it at her head.
Before he let her leave, Castro forced Nina to call and check on two bank accounts because “her mother had recently died, and he wanted to know where the insurance money was located,” according to court records.
The couple’s divorce would have been final June 10.
On Tuesday, Castro’s attorney said he was stunned by his client’s actions.
“I had spoken to him a couple days before this. He was normal. There was nothing to suggest he was of that state of mind,” Gary lawyer Robert Lewis said.
Lewis was representing Castro in the sexual assault case, and an associate in Lewis’ firm was representing Castro in the divorce case. Lewis confirmed that Nina Castro didn’t request a protective order against her husband.
“What was shocking to me was that they still communicated almost every day,” Lewis said of the estranged couple. “... What happened between them? They had a very good working relationship (regarding their children). He must have been very stressed.”
Lewis said Castro had a strong case in the criminal charges against him for the Nov. 23 incident. Nina Castro was unable to identify the gun she claimed that Castro used to force her to have sex with him, and their continuing communication would have bolstered his client’s case, Lewis said.
“It is just startling,” he said of the murder-suicide. “We had an excellent case. I had given him a great amount of hope.”