Jeffrey Epstein's lawyer lashed out on Saturday after the billionaire's apparent suicide in a Manhattan jail cell, saying prosecutors, media members and politicians have "blood on their hands" for his death.
The billionaire and convicted sex trafficker was found hanged in his cell in the protective unit of a Manhattan jail on Saturday. He was rushed to a hospital while in cardiac arrest and died, reports indicated. A number of politicians have spoken out in the wake of his apparent suicide, demanding answers about how one of the most high-profile prisoners who was reportedly already under suicide watch could have taken his life.
A member of Epstein's legal team is now joining those expressing anger. As Fox News reported, lawyer Marc Fernich said he was "outraged" at Epstein's death and lashed out at those who placed public scrutiny on Epstein.
"Breathless reporters excavating every corner of Mr. Epstein's life to pile on, tear him down and kick him at his lowest — while still presumed innocent, before he'd had his day in court," Fernich said.
"All these actors appear to bear some responsibility for this calamity. All seem to have a share of Mr. Epstein's blood on their hands. All should be ashamed of their behavior."Lawyers had tried to argue for Epstein to receive bail, saying that he was not a flight risk. Instead the billionaire was ordered to remain in jail while he awaited trial on charges of underage sex trafficking. Close to two weeks before his death, Epstein was found injured in his cell, prompting anger from many who criticized the prison system for allowing such a high-profile prisoner to be put at risk.
Fernich's statement drew pushback from many, including Miami Herald reporter Julie K. Brown, whose reporting uncovered new victims and details of the controversial plea deal. This created pressure many believe helped lead to new charges against Epstein. On Twitter, Brown noted that Epstein appeared to be unapologetic during his life regarding the allegations against him.Epstein had generated controversy for his close connections to a number of world leaders, including President Donald Trump and former President Bill Clinton. Figures on both sides of the political aisle tried to use Epstein's 2007 conviction and the new charges he faced for child sex trafficking as an attack against both Clinton and Trump. In the wake of Epstein's death, Trump retweeted conspiracy theories hinting that Clinton played some role in Epstein's death.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741. For readers outside the U.S., visit Suicide.org or Befrienders Worldwide for international resources you can use to find help.