She said she had also seen tarps covering the backyard.
But Sgt. Sammy Morris, a Cleveland police spokesman, told CNN that the department had no record of a 911 call reporting a naked woman at Castro's address.
In fact, authorities never had any indications that the women were being held in the home or that anything suspicious was going on there, Cleveland Public Safety Director Martin Flask said. Neighbors had not provided any tips, he added.
Police had visited the home twice, authorities said Tuesday, once after Castro called about a fight in the street and another time to investigate Castro on an unrelated incident involving a child who had been left on a school bus.
The 2004 incident was the first of four exhibitions of "bad judgment" that led to Castro's November firing by Cleveland's school district, according to records released Tuesday night.
"He previously had been suspended for 60 days for leaving a child on a bus; 60 days for making an illegal U-turn in rush hour traffic with a bus load of students, and last school year for using the bus to do his grocery shopping," the letter recommending his dismissal states. His firing came after he had left his bus unattended outside a school after his preschool routes had been canceled, without notifying his dispatcher or depot.
Tito DeJesus, a bandmate of Castro's, said he had been inside the bass player's home once, about two years ago, to help deliver a washer and dryer he'd sold to the suspect and saw "a normal environment." DeJesus said he isn't related to the rescued Gina DeJesus but had known the family for years.
"It didn't seem to be a place where women were being held against their will," he said. "Of course, mind you, I didn't go throughout the entire house. I was just at the beginning of the house, in the living room, but it seemed normal."
Berry was last seen after finishing her shift at a Burger King in Cleveland on April 21, 2003. It was the eve of her 17th birthday. DeJesus disappeared nearly a year later, on April 2, 2004. She was 14.
Michelle Knight vanished on August 22, 2002, and her family reported her missing the next day, Flask said. She was 21.
Little was known about Knight's case Tuesday. Her mother now lives in Naples, Florida, and was contacted by Cleveland police late Monday, a neighbor, Sheldon Gofberg, told CNN.
The three women and the child were released Tuesday from the hospital where they had been taken for evaluations, a spokeswoman said. Tomba said all four appeared to be in good condition, if in need of a good meal.
While amazing, such discoveries are more common now, said John D. Ryan, CEO of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.
"To us at the National Center, this is not something that we find shocking any more," he said. "The fact is, we have seen more and more long-term missing cases end up in the victim being rescued many years after their original abduction."
The most widely reported such incident in recent years was that of Jaycee Dugard, who was freed in 2009 after 18 years of captivity behind the home of a California couple.
In another case, Ryan said last year a 43-year-old man was found and reunited with his mother after being abducted at the age of 2.
More than anything, the three victims need privacy and time with family members, said Elizabeth Smart, who was in the headlines in 2002 when she was kidnapped from her Utah home at age 14 and held captive for nine months.
"I want them to know that nothing that has happened to them will ever diminish their value and it should never hold them back from doing what they want to do," Smart told CNN's "The Situation Room."
The women should not feel pressure to speak publicly about their ordeal, Smart said, adding that time will help them heal. "It's just incredible they are walking away from this horrendous nightmare, alive and safe today," she said.
'We're hoping for a miracle'
Investigators had previously speculated that the disappearances of Berry, DeJesus and another girl, 14-year-old Ashley Summers, may have been connected. Summers' family last saw her in July 2007, when she was 14.
"We did in fact believe there was an association between the Berry case and the DeJesus case as well as the Summers case," said former FBI agent Jennifer Eakin. Eakin is now a case manager at the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, which in 2008 held a comprehensive review of the cases with the FBI and Cleveland police.
Now the Summers family is hoping that the Cleveland investigation will yield information about Ashley, her aunt, Debra Summers, said.
"We're hoping for a miracle," she said.