Jeffrey Epstein’s former cellmate has called for an inquiry into the missing security footage from outside the cell he shared with the sex criminal.
It comes after federal prosecutors claimed surveillance video taken outside of Epstein’s cell during his first alleged suicide attempt at the Manhattan Correctional Complex was destroyed due to a record-keeping error.
The lost footage was taken outside of the cell that Epstein shared with accused quadruple murderer Nick Tartaglione on July 22-23, two weeks before the sex criminal’s death in a different cell.
In court documents filed on Monday, Tartaglione’s attorney asked for a hearing to examine ‘the circumstances’ of the video’s destruction.
Epstein was sharing a cell with accused quadruple murderer Nick Tartaglione (above), who allegedly rushed to assist the sex predator when he tried to kill himself
An MCC cell block is seen above. Prosecutors say that footage from Epstein’s tier was accidentally deleted after his first suicide attempt in late July
The papers asked the court to ‘conduct a hearing into how the video was destroyed, who was responsible for its destruction, and why it was not preserved.’
Attorney Bruce Barket added that the current official explanation as to why the tapes is ‘inadequate as it is non-specific, unsworn and unattested.’
The attorney wrote that the footage would have shown his client Tartaglione was acting ‘appropriately’ and rushed to help Epstein, quashing rumors that the ex-cop had assaulted Epstein in any way.
Officials have said that Epstein unsuccessfully attempted to hang himself and that ex-cop Tartaglione intervened and called for help.
Prosecutors say that the hallway footage of the incident was deleted by accident when prison workers accidentally marked the wrong camera’s footage for preservation.
‘The footage contained on the preserved video was for the correct date and time, but captured a different tier than the one where Cell-1 was located because the preserved video did not show corrections officers responding to any of the cells seen on the video. After speaking with MCC legal counsel, the Government was informed that the MCC computer system listed a different, incorrect cell for Tartaglione,’ prosecutors wrote in a letter filed in Manhattan Federal Court.
Officials have said that sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein (pictured) unsuccessfully attempted to hang himself and that ex-cop Tartaglione intervened and called for help
The letter said that automatic backup systems also failed to preserve the footage.
‘The requested video no longer exists on the backup system and has not since at least August 2019 as a result of technical errors,’ the prosecutors wrote.
Prosecutors have repeatedly waffled on whether or not the overnight hallway footage from the night of July 22 had been preserved.
Epstein died in a different cell, which he alone was assigned to, on August 10 in what the New York City medical examiner ruled a suicide, though his lawyers dispute that finding.
His death, at age 66, came a little over a month after he was arrested and charged with sex trafficking dozens of underage girls as young as 14 from at least 2002 to 2005.
Images were recently revealed that were taken inside the prison cell where he died, showing several nooses fashioned from bed sheets, pills and electrical cords.
The photos from inside the cell also showed multiple prescription pill bottles, several electrical cords and enough bed sheets for several inmates dumped on the floor.
Photos from inside his cell reveal that fragments of material were found hanging from a window, while a large strip of bedding was also looped through a hole on the top bunk bed
Multiple nooses fashioned from the orange bedding were found on the floor of Epstein’s cell
Dr Michael Baden, who was hired by Epstein’s brother to investigate the death and was present during the autopsy, said there was no image taken of the 66-year-old inside his cell.
He said that without that photo it was difficult to determine Epstein’s cause of death and said the official ruling was ‘premature judgment’.
Dr Baden believes the forensic evidence released so far in Epstein’s death points more to murder and strangulation rather than suicide.
He pointed out that the noose found in Epstein’s cell did not appear to have any blood on it despite the image from his autopsy showing a wound around his neck.
Dr Baden said the wound across Epstein’s neck was more common with someone who has been strangled with a wire instead of a hanging.
He said that in most hangings, it was common for the ligature to slide up towards the jaw bone and not rest in the middle of one’s neck.
He also pointed to the multiple fractures Epstein sustained in his neck.