Medical Examiner Rules Jeffrey Epstein's Death Was Suicide

The accused child sex trafficker was found dead in his prison cell last week.

Jeffrey Epstein

Image via Getty/Rick Friedman Photography/Corbis

Jeffrey Epstein

Jeffrey Epstein's death has been ruled a suicide, a New York medical examiner confirmed Friday.

The 66-year-old financier was found unresponsive in his prison cell on Aug. 10 at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York City, where he was awaiting trial for child sex trafficking charges. According to the Associated Press, authorities concluded Epstein had died by hanging. 

Dr. Barbara Sampson released a brief statement saying she made the ruling following a "careful review of all investigative information, including complete autopsy findings."

Though authorities previously stated Epstein's death appeared to be a suicide, the details surrounding the case sparked speculation and theories of foul play. Many questioned how a high-profile inmate such as Epstein could've taken his own life in one of the nation's most secure prison facilities. It's also important to note that just weeks after his arrest, the 66-year-old was reportedly found semi-conscious in his prison cell with marks around his neck. The incident was deemed a suspected suicide attempt, and Epstein was subsequently transferred to a Special Housing Unit for around-the-clock monitoring. Sources claimed that the financier was taken off suicide watch about a week later; however, guards were required to check on him every half hour at the time of his death.

Epstein was the only person indicted in the child sex trafficking case, but newly unsealed records implicated a number of high-profile figures in Epstein's alleged sex trafficking ring. Among those named in the documents were former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, former Senator George Mitchell, Hyatt hotels executive chairman Tom Pritzker, the late MIT professor Marvin Minsky, and fund manager Glenn Dubin. The fact that Epstein surrounded himself with so many powerful men who were said to be involved in his alleged sex trafficking network—and that he was able to hang himself while under strict monitoring—provided fodder for widespread conspiracy theories.

Donald Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani and Rep. Al Green (D-Texas) expressed their skepticism via Twitter:

What does the word watch mean in the phrase suicide
Watch? Who was watching? What does camera show? It is inconceivable Epstein could have hung himself if there was a suicide Watch? Follow the motives.

— Rudy W. Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) August 10, 2019

The suicide of Mr. Epstein is an impossibilty. When an impossiblty occurs involving powerful people and possible criminality there must be an investigation to end speculation. Because the public has a right to know, I’m calling for a congressional investigation. #JefferyEpstein

— Congressman Al Green (@RepAlGreen) August 10, 2019

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