The disgraced financier was found unresponsive in his cell on Saturday morning, August 10, less than 3 since he was put on suicide watch after he discovered with what appeared to be self-inflicted marks on his neck.
Disgraced multimillionaire and accused sex trafficker, Jeffrey Epstein, died by suicide on Saturday according to law enforcement sources. The Federal Bureau of Prisons revealed that he was found unresponsive in his cell at Metropolitan Correctional Center in Lower Manhattan at around 6:30 a.m. ET.
In a news release about his death, the bureau stated that staff at the facility started life-saving measures on Epstein, who was then transported in cardiac arrest at 6:39 a.m. to New York Downtown Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The jailed financier was 66 years old at the time of his death and was awaiting trial on federal charges accusing him of sexually abusing underage girls.
Law enforcement sources informed ABC News that authorities believe Epstein hanged himself. Meanwhile, speaking to CNN, a federal official stated no foul play is suspected in the high-profile inmate's death. Calling the death "an apparent suicide" the bureau's press release said that the FBI is investigating the incident.
Epstein's death raises a lot of questions as it came just a day after a court unsealed new details of the claims against him and barely three weeks after he was found unresponsive in his cell with what appeared to be self-inflicted marks on his neck. Although he was put on suicide watch following the July 23 incident, he was not on suicide watch at the time of his death.
Breaking News: Jeffrey Epstein was left alone and not closely monitored before his suicide, in apparent violation of jail procedures, officials said https://t.co/cxxS33zgVN— The New York Times (@nytimes) August 11, 2019
Epstein was arrested on July 6 in New Jersey, charged with one count of sex trafficking and one count of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking. He pleaded not guilty to the charges which accused him of running a sex trafficking ring of underage girls, some as young as 14 years old.
The financier faced up to 45 years in prison if convicted for the charged. Although he requested to remain under house arrest at his Upper East Side mansion, a judge denied him bail in mid-July and Epstein was due to go to trial at some point in 2020.
The billionaire financier was charged with allegedly helming a sex-trafficking ring involving underage girls. Epstein was arrested on July 6, pleaded not guilty and was being housed in a Manhattan jail https://t.co/m3sLjXymeJ— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) August 10, 2019
With news of his death making headlines over the weekend, Epstein's alleged victims condemned the apparent suicide as a lack of justice for them. 30-year-old Jena-Lisa Jones, who accused the millionaire of sexually abusing her at the age of 14 in Florida, said in a statement, "I am extremely mad and hurt thinking he once again thought he was above us and took the easy way out ... I still can't wrap my head around the fact that's really true. God will have his judgment now."
Alleged victims of Jeffrey Epstein say he 'will never face the consequences' https://t.co/l7cpfGnkiC— Delreo Johnson (@JohnsonDelreo) August 11, 2019
Another alleged victim of Epstein, Jennifer Araoz, who claimed she was raped by the financier when she was 15, urged authorities to "pursue and prosecute his accomplices and enablers." Now 32-year-old Araoz said, "I am angry Jeffrey Epstein won’t have to face the survivors of his abuse in court. We have to live with the scars of his actions for the rest of our lives, while he will never face the consequences of the crimes he committed the pain and trauma he caused so many people."
Meanwhile, Michelle Licata, an alleged Florida victim of the millionaire, said that she did not want anyone to die. "I just wanted him to be held accountable for his actions. Simple as that," said Licata, who was 16 at the time of her alleged abuse.
Epstein's accusers aren't the only ones disappointed by his apparent suicide with US Attorney General William Barr saying that he was "appalled" to learn of the inmate's death in federal custody. He added that the Justice Department's inspector general will look into the circumstances of the death.
Breaking News: Jeffrey Epstein was not under suicide watch when he took his own life. Attorney General William Barr said the death “raises serious questions.” https://t.co/CcNFlGjf1A— The New York Times (@nytimes) August 10, 2019
"Mr. Epstein's death raises serious questions that must be answered," said Barr in a news release. A source familiar with the case revealed that the Attorney General was livid at the events surrounding the financier's apparent suicide and that he intends to get to the bottom of whatever happened. Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman, whose office was prosecuting Epstein, deemed the incident "disturbing."
In a statement, he said, "We are deeply aware of their potential to present yet another hurdle to giving Epstein's many victims their day in court." Berman added that the "investigation of the conduct charged in the Indictment - which included a conspiracy count - remains ongoing."
“Geoffrey S. Berman, the U.S. attorney in Manhattan, said Saturday the suicide was disturbing but his office would continue to investigate, noting that Mr. Epstein’s indictment included a conspiracy count.” That’s the count that could still ensnare Trump.https://t.co/4x8WYbm8BC— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) August 11, 2019
In the wake of Epstein's death, several politicians including the likes of Democratic congressman Lois Frankel and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have come forward demanding answers. Frankel, who represents Palm Beach, said the death "does not end the need for justice for his victims or the right of the public to know why a prolific child molester got a slap on the wrist instead of a long prison sentence."
We need answers. Lots of them.https://t.co/4DMckiZnVB— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 10, 2019
Despite Epstein's death, a lawyer for Courtney Wild, one of the women in Epstein's controversial 2007 plea deal, urged other possible victims of the financier to still come forward with their own allegations. "The victims deserved to see Epstein held accountable, and he owed it to everyone he hurt to accept responsibility for all of the pain he caused. We will continue to represent his victims and will not stop in their pursuit of finality and justice," said Brad Edwards, who represents several alleged victims including Wild.