A medical expert hired by the family of deceased billionaire Jeffrey Epstein said that the fatal injuries to his neck appeared to be more consistent with homicide than suicide, which was the official cause of his death.
Epstein was found hanged in his Manhattan jail cell earlier this month and was declared dead after being rushed to a nearby hospital. A New York City coroner officially ruled that his death was a suicide by hanging, but there were still many unanswered questions about how the could have taken his life while under close security in a protected area of the federal jail. As The Daily Mail reported, a medical expert is now casting doubt on Epstein’s official cause of death.
Martin Weinberg this week told U.S. District Judge Richard Berman that the expert hired by the family of the convicted sex trafficker said that injuries appeared to be more consistent with homicide. The judge took no immediate action on Weinberg’s request to look into the matter, the report noted, but Attorney General William Barr has ordered a federal investigation into Epstein’s death. The financier was being held in Manhattan’s Metropolitan Correctional Center on a slew of new charges of sex trafficking of underage girls, with the federal facility falling under Barr’s oversight.
As The Daily Mail noted, Epstein was found with a number of broken bones in his neck, including the hyoid bone, after reportedly hanging himself with a bedsheet. Forensic experts said that this specific broken bone is more commonly seen in victims who are strangled to death, though it can also occur when people hang themselves.
The new questions about Epstein’s cause of death come amid another revelation he was not despondent before his death and had shown no signs that he may have been planning to take his life. As CNBC reported, lawyer Reid Weingarten also told Judge Berman at Tuesday’s hearing that Epstein did not seem to be suicidal, saying that he and other defense attorneys met with Epstein shortly before his death and “we did not see a despairing, despondent, suicidal person.”
“Justice has never been served in this case.” Women who said they were abused by Jeffrey Epstein spoke out in an unusual hearing after his suicide.https://t.co/tTN2shN7Gw
— The New York Times (@nytimes) August 27, 2019
Close to two weeks before his death, Epstein was found in his cell with injuries to his neck in what was described by some as a suicide attempt. Later reports confirmed that Epstein was placed on suicide watch in his cell, but it had been lifted at some point before his death.