Medical examiners have ruled Jeffrey Epstein’s prison death was a suicide by hanging, according to the Associated Press.
The determination came six days after Epstein was found dead in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan, where he was awaiting trial on federal sex trafficking charges.
Guards on their morning rounds found Epstein at about 6:30 a.m. on Aug. 10, prison officials said. He appeared to have tied a bedsheet to the top of a set of bunk beds, then knelt toward the floor with enough force that he broke several bones in his neck, officials said.
The Washington Post reported Thursday that among the broken bones found during Epstein’s autopsy was the hyoid bone, which is near the Adam’s apple in men. Citing forensic experts, the Post reported that while the bone is known to break during hangings, breaks are more common in deaths by strangulation. However, the Post also noted that the bone is more prone to break in older men during a hanging; Epstein was 66 at the time of his death.
Those findings added to the unsealing of some 2,000 legal documents in Manhattan federal court that embroiled other powerful men who publicly associated with Epstein over the years — from Donald Trump to attorney Alan Dershowitz, Prince Andrew and Bill Clinton — had conspiracy theorists’ tongues wagging with speculation that his death was a homicide.
Epstein’s suicide came after he appeared to have made an attempt to kill himself in late July, and days after prison staff had recommended he be removed from suicide watch. Multiple people familiar with operations at the jail say he had been put back in a high-security housing unit where he was less closely monitored, but still supposed to be checked on every 30 minutes.
Attorney General William Barr said officials have uncovered “serious irregularities” at the jail. The FBI and the Justice Department’s inspector general are both investigating Epstein’s death.
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