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Ocasio-Cortez calls for answers after Epstein found dead in jail cell

The Hill logo The Hill 8/10/2019 Tal Axelrod
a person wearing a black shirt: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wants answers after the death of Jeffrey Epstein. © Greg Nash Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wants answers after the death of Jeffrey Epstein.

New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D) led public calls Saturday demanding answers after disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in his Manhattan jail cell due to an apparent suicide.

"We need answers. Lots of them," Ocasio-Cortez, a member of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, tweeted.

Multiple media outlets reported Saturday that Epstein's body was discovered in his jail cell around 7:30 a.m. at the Metropolitan Correctional Center.

Many immediately began questioning the details surrounding his death after Epstein was reportedly put on suicide watch in late July following a possible suicide attempt.

"He reportedly tried to kill himself two weeks ago. And is allowed to finish the job now? Bull----," MSNBC host Joe Scarborough tweeted.

The MCC did not immediately return requests for comment from The Hill on Saturday morning.

Epstein was in prison awaiting trial over charges of sexually trafficking minors, to which he had pleaded not guilty.

His suicide comes a day after testimony was released from one of his alleged victims that unveiled the inner workings of his alleged operation.

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), who sits on the Judiciary Committee, called on the panel's chairman, Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), to prioritize investigating the circumstances around Epstein's death over other probes being carried out by the committee.

"Chairman @RepJerryNadler should prioritize a Judiciary investigation into how Jeffrey Epstein died in federal custody (in Nadler's own neighborhood!) over the Kavanaugh confirmation (which already happened), and the Russia hoax (which never happened)," Gaetz tweeted.

Epstein served 13 months in jail about 10 years ago after reaching a deal with prosecutors that has been panned as too lenient. He was arrested in July and charged with trafficking underage girls from 2002 to 2005.

John Bowden contributed reporting.

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