Convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, who was jailed in Manhattan on charges of sex trafficking involving teenage girls, was awaiting trial when he died in his cell in August 2019.
The New York City medical examiner ruled Epstein’s death a suicide by hanging. American financier and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein had told a jail psychologist he was too much of “a coward” to take his own life just two weeks before he was found dead in his cell on 10 August 2019, with a coroner ruling his death a suicide, reported The New York Times.
The revelation comes as part of a detailed analysis of over 2,000 pages of Federal Bureau of Prisons records obtained by the outlet under a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit and published on Tuesday.
Records compiled by those who interacted with the disgraced tycoon during his 36 days of detention on sex trafficking charges involving teenage girls reveal that Epstein told a jail psychologist “I have no interest in killing myself” after he was found semiconscious on the floor of his cell one morning in July 2019. A strip of bedsheet was described as having been tied around his neck. His cellmate, a multiple murder and drug conspiracy suspect denied harming Epstein.
Spencer Kuvin, a lawyer who represented three of Epstein’s alleged victims, said in July 2019 that there was a high probability that the financier, who boasted of connections with the rich and the powerful, would not live to go on trial.
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In the following weeks after that first apparent suicide instance, Epstein insisted to jailhouse psychologists during suicide risk assessment that he was living “a wonderful life” and admitted he was “a coward” who could not kill himself. “I would never do that to myself,” Epstein said.
“He stated he lives for and plans to finish this case and to go back to his normal life,” the psychologist wrote, according to the records. However, reports also show the financier had juggled assurances that he had much to live for with hints that he was becoming increasingly dejected.
In conversations with psychologists and other inmates Epstein is said to have voiced an interest in physics and mathematics, and even offered investment advice, while recalling his days hobnobbing with celebrities.
However, he also complained about difficulty sleeping, dehydration, the running toilet in his cell, the orange prison garb the inmates had to wear, and a numbness in his right arm.
Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in his cell at the Metropolitan correctional center in Manhattan on 10 August 2019, while awaiting trial on charges of trafficking teenage girls. He had pleaded not guilty. After being transported in cardiac arrest to the New York Downtown Hospital, he was pronounced dead that same day, with the New York City medical examiner ruling his death a suicide by hanging.
“The lack of significant interpersonal connections, a complete loss of his status in both the community and among associates, and the idea of potentially spending his life in prison… were likely factors contributing to Mr. Epstein’s suicide,” the post-mortem stated.
According to the newly obtained records cited by the outlet, jail and Federal Bureau of Prisons officials had made numerous mistakes leading up to Epstein’s death. While no apparent details are offered to support the various speculations that Epstein’s death was not a suicide, numerous instances are revealed of apparent incompetence by those running the federal detention center.
Thus, an intake screening form initially described Jeffrey Epstein as a Black male while he was white, and indicated that he had no prior sex offence convictions. Epstein had been a registered sex offender with two 2008 convictions in Florida for solicitation of prostitution and procurement of minors to engage in prostitution.
Records show that in an apparent violation of jail policy, Epstein’s social phone calls were neither recorded nor logged. On the night of his death, in violation of a directive that he be assigned a cellmate, jail personnel had left the disgraced banker alone.
Two days after Epstein’s death, William Barr, the then US attorney general, said there were “serious irregularities” at the correctional center, and lambasted a “perfect storm of screw-ups”. The Bureau of Prisons had declined to comment on Epstein’s detention, stating that “the safe, secure and humane housing of inmates is B.O.P.’s highest priority”.