In a letter to Attorney General William Barr on Saturday, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) said, “The Department of Justice failed,” and “heads must roll” when it comes to recent death of Jeffrey Epstein.
Barr’s own statement released on Saturday said that he was “appalled to learn” of Jeffrey Epstein’s “apparent suicide while in federal custody.” He also said that the Inspector General will investigate the circumstances of Epstein’s death.
“I was appalled to learn that Jeffrey Epstein was found dead early this morning from an apparent suicide while in federal custody,” Barr’s statement reads. “Mr. Epstein’s death raises serious questions that must be answered. In addition to the FBI’s investigation, I have consulted with the Inspector General who is opening an investigation into the circumstances of Mr. Epstein’s death.”
The New York Post reported that the incarcerated alleged pedophile was found “hanging by his neck” on Saturday morning in his single-inmate cell at the ultra-secure Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC), where suicides “are nearly unheard of.”
It has been widely reported that Epstein was taken off 24-hour supervised suicide watch after a failed suicide attempt on July 23. That incident has still been under investigation as to whether it was an attempt by Epstein to kill himself or if it was an assault by someone else within the jail.
Sasse, who is Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Oversight, Agency Action, Federal Rights and Federal Courts, reminded Barr that he promised justice “justice would be done” for Epstein’s victims.
Source: Fox News
“The Department of Justice failed, and today Jeffrey Epstein’s co-conspirators think they might have just gotten one last sweetheart deal. Every single person in the Justice Department — from your Main Justice headquarters staff all the way to the night-shift jailer — knew that this man was a suicide risk, and that his dark secrets couldn’t be allowed to die with him. Given Epstein’s previous attempted suicide, he should have been locked in a padded room under unbroken, 24/7, constant surveillance. Obviously, heads must roll,” Sasse said.
“During your nomination process, you committed to me to ensuring that justice would be done for his victims,” continued Sasse. “I was pleased to see the Department open an investigation into the mishandling of the ridiculous 2008 non-prosecution agreement, and then the decision to bring subsequent charges against Epstein. Knowing this monster’s history of thwarting justice, I also called for him to be held without bail upon his July 6 arrest.”
Sasse went on to say that it should have been “clear” that Epstein would “go to any lengths” to avoid accountability.
“It should have been abundantly clear that Epstein would go to any lengths to avoid being held accountable for his crimes, including by killing himself. Being responsible for Epstein’s custody and prosecution, the Department of Justice should not have allowed this to happen,” Sasse said. “His death not only deprives his victims of the opportunity to confront him in court and to see him held accountable for his crimes, but also makes it harder to unravel his ring and to hold accountable the many other powerful men who raped and exploited these children.”
Standard procedure at MCC is for two jail guards to make separate checks on all prisoners every 30 minutes. However, that procedure was not followed the night of the financier’s death, a source told Reuters. Those on suicide watch get checked every 15 minutes.
Former US Attorney Preet Bharara tweeted that “there should be — and almost certainly is — video of Epstein’s suicide at MCC. One hopes it is complete, conclusive, and secured.”
There should be — and almost certainly is — video of Epstein’s suicide at MCC. One hopes it is complete, conclusive, and secured.
— Preet Bharara (@PreetBharara) August 10, 2019
New York Times reporter Vicky Ward tweeted that AG Barr is “‘livid’ and determined to find out exactly what happened.”
“Attorney General William P. Barr, upon being informed of Epstein’s death while in federal custody, was ‘livid’ and determined to figure out exactly what happened, said a person familiar with his reaction.” https://t.co/SXN0zrbYCr
— Vicky Ward (@VickyPJWard) August 10, 2019
According to the Washington Post, those close to Epstein insist that he seemed to be in “good spirits.” He had been meeting with his legal team for 12-hour-a-day sessions, one source told the Post. They are suspicious that foul play may be involved:
People close to Epstein, noting that he seemed recently to be in good spirits, were surprised by reports of suicide, according to one person familiar with their discussions Saturday, and expressed concern about the possibility of foul play. His attorneys are seeking to learn from authorities how Epstein’s body was found and how such an incident could have happened, this person said.
Two law enforcement officials said there were no early indicators of foul play, but they noted that the FBI investigation was in its infancy.
“Epstein is gone, but justice must still be served,” Jennifer Araoz, who accused Epstein of raping her when she was 15 years old, told the Post. “I hope the authorities will pursue and prosecute his accomplices and enablers, and ensure redress for his victims.”
“Today’s events are disturbing, and we are deeply aware of their potential to present yet another hurdle to giving Epstein’s many victims their day in Court,” said U.S Attorney Geoff Berman in a public statement. “To those brave young women who have already come forward and to the many others who have yet to do so, let me reiterate that we remain committed to standing for you, and our investigation of the conduct charged in the Indictment — which included a conspiracy count — remains ongoing.”
Epstein had clear ties to countless celebrities and politicians, including Bill Clinton. His arrest last month on federal sex trafficking charges could have landed him in prison for 45 years.
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