Convicted abuser Jeffrey Epstein hung himself using a bedsheet, according to a law enforcement source cited by The New York Post. The ultra-wealthy inmate, who faced a new criminal case for allegedly abusing dozens of underage girls, was found dead Saturday morning, federal officials say.
The development came just says after he apparently attempted to take his life. His attorneys had asked that he be taken off suicide watch, however, according to a source who spoke with The Wall Street Journal. Multiple outlets have reported, however, that the plan was to have a guard check in on Epstein every 30 minutes and to make sure that he had a cellmate. Neither thing reportedly happened.
The sudden nature of Epstein’s death and his connections to powerful people fueled unsubstantiated conspiracy theories that he was killed.
The brass tacks of the matter is that federal authorities are investigating and they say, on background, that jail officials at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan screwed up.
When it comes down it, alleged victims and pundits say he escaped justice. Even so, federal authorities are turning their sights on people who allegedly helped him maintain a years-long pattern of luring underage girls into abuse.
FBI agents just raided Epstein’s island on the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Federal agents, including FBI and CBP were seen on the dock and grounds of Little Saint James, the island owned by accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The U.S. Attorney’s Office and SDNY declined to comment on the operation. https://t.co/euCLwh7rKi pic.twitter.com/leAKQqgruA
— ABC News (@ABC) August 12, 2019
The Federal Bureau of Prisons previously declined to comment when Law&Crime asked about how closely Epstein was being watched in jail. They pointed us toward a statement from Attorney General William Barr.
“I was appalled to learn that Jeffrey Epstein was found dead early this morning from an apparent suicide while in federal custody,” he wrote. “Mr. Epstein’s death raises serious questions that must be answered. In addition to the FBI’s investigation, I have consulted with the Inspector General who is opening an investigation into the circumstances of Mr. Epstein’s death.”
They declined to provide further comment regarding the manner of Epstein’s death.
Note: Updated to show that the Federal Bureau of Prisons responded to a Law&Crime request for comment.
[Mugshot via New York Sex Offender Registry.]