It’s the burning question on everyone’s minds, so controversial that Ricky Gervais used it as one of his punchlines in his epic monologue at the recently-concluded 77th Golden Globe awards: did Jeffrey Epstein really kill himself?
For forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden, the answer is no and during an interview on Fox News Monday, he pointed to autopsy findings that suggest Epstein was possibly murdered.
Baden was hired by Epstein’s brother to investigate his death and described as “premature” the ruling that the disgraced billionaire’s death was a suicide.
“I think there’s a lot of information that still hasn’t been revealed yet that is essential in order to arrive at a conclusion, whether this is a suicide or homicide,” Baden said. “I think the closing out of the case as a suicide so quickly was premature.”
Baden pointed to the photos that CBS News released that showed the condition of Epstein’s cell when he died.
It shows carefully strewn bedsheets that he supposedly used to make the noose that he used to hang himself with.But Baden pointed out the ligature mark on Epstein’s neck which he says “doesn’t match the ligature that was found at the scene and that the medical examiner copied to show how he was hanged.
“It was too wide and too smooth. This is a rougher injury,” said Baden. “There is no transfer of any blood on that ligature from the neck. It doesn’t match the ligature mark on the neck. It’s too wide, it’s too smooth, and it doesn’t have any transfer of skin or blood.”
In the original autopsy, it was noted Epstein had “two fractures on the left and right sides of his larynx, specifically the thyroid cartilage or Adam’s apple.” Baden countered that those were not injuries that you would sustain from suicide by hanging.
“In hanging, one doesn’t get three fractures of the Adam’s apple and the bone, the hyoid bone above it. That just doesn’t happen,” argued Baden. “I think the important thing is to find out what was seen when the guards first went into the cell. Was he hanging? Was he on the ground? As some people reported when he was found.”
“The removal of the body destroyed a lot of the forensic evidence,” he continued. “EMS is not supposed to remove dead bodies from jails. They’re supposed to have a whole forensic workup, what kind of forensic evidence is on the clothing, how long the person was dead.”
“We can tell from the ligature mark that he had been — there was a tight ligature around his neck for many hours, and the front of the neck, before he was found–so he was dead for a long time. But we could be more specific about that if somebody tested out the stiffness of the body, et cetera, at the scene,” he concluded.
Baden’s explosive declaration comes after a “60 Minutes” report that said numerous protocols weren’t followed at the time of Epstein’s death, only fueling the suspicion that his death was anything but a suicide.