New York City’s medical examiner says there is no doubt that Jeffrey Epstein killed himself. Contradicting the many conspiracy theories that have been making the rounds since the 66-year-old financier was found dead in his cell last week, the medical examiner said he had hanged himself in his jail cell. Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Barbara Sampson released a statement, detailing that she made the suicide determination “after careful review of all investigative information, including complete autopsy findings.”
The ruling, of course, will do little to quell all the conspiracy theories that have proliferated online since Epstein was found dead less than 24 hours after thousands of pages of formerly sealed documents were publicly released providing new disturbing details of the sex trafficking allegations against him. Epstein’s lawyers did not seem to be in any mood to accept the findings at face value. “We are not satisfied with the conclusions of the medical examiner,” three of Epstein’s lawyers, Martin G. Weinberg, Reid Weingarten and Michael Miller, said in a statement. “We will have a more complete response in the coming days.” The lawyers vowed to conduct their own investigation into Epstein’s death.
The revelation comes amid word that some jail staff members are not cooperating with the investigation into the death. But amid all the conspiracy theories, reporting has also revealed a prison with staff that had overworked employees who failed to fully keep an eye on Epstein like they were supposed to, leading to criticism from lawmakers and officials, including Attorney General Willian Barr. The conditions of the prison have also come under the microscope, revealing a place infested with rodents and faulty plumbing.
In a deeply reported piece, the New York Times takes a look at the last few days of Epstein’s life and paints the picture of a man trying to use his wealth and privilege to improve his living conditions but failing miserably. Lawyers would visit Epstein for up to 12 hours a day in what appeared to be nothing but a ploy to be able to be in the private meeting room. He also seemed to try to ingratiate himself with other inmates by depositing money in their commissary accounts. Despite all these strategies, Epstein appeared to take a turn in the last few days of his life as he barely bathed and was sleeping on the floor. On the day he died, guards were supposed to check on him every 30 minutes but failed to do so for around three hours.