Despite having attempted suicide once already, Epstein somehow was not on suicide watch. The result is as I expected Jeffrey Epstein Dead in Suicide at Manhattan Jail, Officials Say.
Jeffrey Epstein, the financier who was long dogged by accusations of sexual abuse of girls and who was able to cultivate a stream of high-profile friends despite his lurid lifestyle, killed himself in his Manhattan jail cell, officials said on Saturday.
Mr. Epstein hanged himself, the officials said. He was found at roughly 6:30 a.m. Saturday at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan and was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead, the federal Bureau of Prisons said in a statement.
Last month, a week after being denied bail on federal sex trafficking charges, Mr. Epstein was found unconscious in his cell at the jail with marks on his neck. Prison officials had been investigating that incident as a possible suicide attempt.
Mr. Epstein had been on suicide watch after he was found injured on July 23 and received a daily psychiatric evaluation, according to a person familiar with his detention. He was removed from suicide watch on July 29 and returned to the special housing unit, a segregated area of the prison with extra security, this person said.
Manhattan federal prosecutors last month charged Mr. Epstein, 66, with sex trafficking of girls as young as 14. The indictment renewed attention toward how Mr. Epstein — who had opulent homes, a private jet and access to elite circles — had escaped severe punishment in an earlier investigation into his abuse of girls more than a decade ago in Florida.
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Epstein's private jet was called the Lolita Express.
According to flight logs, former President Bill Clinton flew on the "Lolita Express" a total of 27 times. "Many of those times Clinton had his Secret Service with him and many times he did not," according to investigative journalist Conchita Sarnoff - who first revealed the former president's extensive flights on Epstein's "lolita express" in a 2010 Daily Beast exposé.
Clinton claimed in a July statement that he only took "a total of four trips on Jeffrey Epstein's airplane" in 2002 and 2003, and that Secret Service accompanied him at all times - which Sarnoff told Fox News was a total lie.
"I know from the pilot logs and these are pilot logs that you know were written by different pilots and at different times that Clinton went, he was a guest of Epstein's 27 times," said Sarnoff.
"It would not be surprising to find that some of these flight logs…were likely designed to hide evidence of criminal activity—or perhaps later cleansed of such evidence," wrote the lawyers for some of Epstein's accusers in a 2015 court filing.
What's reasonably clear is that many people wanted Epstein dead in addition to Epstein himself, even assuming it was suicide.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock