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A Psychologist Removed Epstein From Suicide Watch

Per newly released letter from the Justice Department
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2019 6:30 AM CDT
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This March 28, 2017, file photo, provided by the New York State Sex Offender Registry shows Jeffrey Epstein.   (New York State Sex Offender Registry via AP, File)

(Newser) – It was a "doctoral-level psychologist" who determined Jeffrey Epstein should be removed from suicide watch, the Justice Department revealed late Friday, according to USA Today. The billionaire financier was found dead in his cell at the federal Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan August 10 as he awaited trial on charges of sexual abuse and trafficking of underage girls. He had originally been placed on suicide watch July 23, per Fox News. Days before he hanged himself, Epstein spoke to the psychologist, the Justice Department revealed in a letter responding to questions from House Judiciary Committee leaders about why Epstein was not being watched more closely.

"The Department can confirm that Mr. Epstein was placed on suicide watch in July," reads the letter dated Thursday. "Mr. Epstein was later removed from suicide watch after being evaluated by a doctoral-level psychologist who determined that a suicide watch was no longer warranted." The letter said the department is limited in what it can reveal due to ongoing investigations. "The Department and the Bureau [of Prisons] take seriously the responsibility to ensure the safety and security of all inmates in the custody of the Bureau," it reads, per the Hill. "We are committed to working diligently to investigate this matter fully and the Department may be in a position to provide additional information at a later date as appropriate." It also adds that "Although Mr. Epstein is deceased, the department’s case against anyone who was complicit in his alleged crimes will continue." Also Friday, France announced it had opened an investigation into the alleged rape of minors and other alleged crimes linked to the Epstein case. (Read more Jeffrey Epstein stories.)

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