By Kevin Gosztola
The United States holds more of its population in prisons and jails than any other country in the world. Suicide is one of the biggest causes of death in U.S. jails and hit a high of 50 deaths for every 100,000 inmates in 2014.
That makes the death of Jeffrey Epstein, who was involved in a sex trafficking ring, a uniquely American death, especially if investigators confirm he committed suicide.
A day after Epstein was found dead, the New York Times spoke with an unnamed “law enforcement official with knowledge of his detention.” The official claimed Epstein was “supposed to have been checked by the two guards in the protective housing unit every 30 minutes, but that procedure was not followed” on August 9.
The Times cited additional unnamed officials, who suggested “because Mr. Epstein may have tried to commit suicide three weeks earlier, he was supposed to have had another inmate in his cell.”
“But the jail had recently transferred his cellmate and allowed Mr. Epstein to be housed alone, a decision that also violated the jail’s procedures,” according to two officials.
The Associated Press reported that guards in the Metropolitan Correctional Center’s…