An autopsy has been completed of Jeffrey Epstein, but the cause of his death needs further investigation, New York’s chief medical examiner Barbara Sampson said Sunday in a statement.
“Today, a medical examiner performer the autopsy of Jeffrey Epstein,” the statement reads. “The ME’s determination is pending further information at this time. At the request of those representing the decedent, and with the awareness of the federal prosecutor (Dr. Michael Baden) to observe the autopsy examination. This is routine practice.”
The results come a day after the wealthy financier was found hanged in his cell in the Metropolitan Correctional Center on Saturday morning as he awaited trial in federal charges of sex trafficking. He was transported to a nearby hospital, where he died, according to a statement by the Metropolitan Correctional Center.
Epstein had been placed on suicide watch in his Manhattan cell after he was found nearly unconscious on July 29 with injuries around his neck. It’s unclear how he sustained his injuries. But, according to the New York Daily News, he had been taken off suicide watch just six days before his death.
The financier was arrested in early July and charged with sex trafficking by federal prosecutors, but over a decade prior to that, he pleaded guilty in Florida to soliciting a minor for prostitution. He served 13 months of an 18-month sentence and was released in 2009.
Federal prosecutors have said that Epstein sexually abused dozens of underage girls and paid many of them to recruit others. Investigators also said they found “nude photographs of what appear to be underage girls” during a search of his mansion after his arrest. He had pleaded not guilty to the charges.
On Friday, some 2,000 legal documents were unsealed in Manhattan federal court related to a defamation suit brought by Virginia Giuffre, a self-identified “sex slave” of Epstein’s, against his longtime companion, British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell.
The documents, which include depositions, police reports, flight logs and even a young woman’s memoir, offered new details of sexual abuse accusations against Epstein and several of his associates. The case has also embroiled other powerful men who publicly associated with Epstein over the years, from Donald Trump to attorney Alan Dershowitz, Prince Andrew and Bill Clinton.
Attorney General William Barr Saturday said in a statement Saturday that he consulted with the Department of Justice’s inspector general, who is opening an investigation into the circumstances of Epstein’s death.