Guards at Jeffrey Epstein’s New York City jail failed to conduct the required checks on prisoners overnight, according to a report.
Epstein died of a suspected suicide on Saturday after being found unresponsive in his cell where he was being held on child sex trafficking charges.
At around 6:30 a.m., Epstein was “found unresponsive in his cell in the Special Housing Unit from an apparent suicide,” the Federal Bureau of Prisons said in a news release. He was pronounced dead at 7:30 a.m. upon arrival at the Presbyterian Lower Manhattan Hospital.
Epstein hanged himself while in solitary confinement, according to three law enforcement sources. NBC reports that Epstein was not on suicide watch, despite the fact that he attempted suicide in July.
Breitbart.com reports: “At the MCC, two jail guards are required to make separate checks on all prisoners every 30 minutes, but that procedure was not followed overnight, according to the source. In addition, every 15 minutes guards are required to make another check on prisoners who are on suicide watch,” Reuters reports.
In July, Epstein was found nearly unconscious in his cell with injuries to his neck and was placed on suicide watch.
Attorney General William Barr has directed the FBI and Department of Justice inspector general to launch a full investigation into Epstein’s death.
A statement via Barr reads:
I was appalled to learn that Jeffrey Epstein was found dead early this morning from an apparent suicide while in federal custody. 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.
In a separate statement, Geoffrey Berman, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, said his office’s probe into the deceased financier will continue:
Today’s events are disturbing, and we are deeply aware of their potential to present yet another hurdle to giving Epstein’s many victims their day in Court. To those brave young women who have already come forward and to the many others who have yet to do so, let me reiterate that we remain committed to standing for you, and our investigation of the conduct charged in the Indictment — which included a conspiracy count — remains ongoing.
Meanwhile, an attorney for Epstein is blaming the federal government, the media, and the judge overseeing his client’s case for the millionaire’s death.
Marc Fernich told Fox News:
All these actors appear to bear some responsibility for this calamity. All seem to have a share of Mr. Epstein’s blood on their hands. All should be ashamed of their behavior. I call for a full investigation into the circumstances surrounding Mr. Epstein’s death. The public needs to know exactly what happened and why – and how his custodians could have let it occur.
In 2008, Epstein pleaded guilty to state charges of soliciting a minor for prostitution. He served 13 months, including work release, and registered as a sex offender in Florida. Epstein had been accused of running an international sex trafficking operation.