Disgraced billionaire Jeffery Epstein died of an apparent suicide on Saturday, but the news broke in a surprising place. Thirty-eight minutes before the first tweet about Epstein’s death, by ABC reporter Aaron Katersky, an anonymous 4chan user posted news of the hanging.
Posted at 8:16 am, the text reportedly read, “[D]ont ask me how I know, but Epstein died an hour ago from hanging, cardiac arrest. Screencap this.” The text was accompanied by a picture of Pepe the Frog, a popular meme in the 4-Chan community.
The user responded to questions and comments with information about the procedures. According to the user, medics tried to resuscitate the alleged sex trafficker for 40 minutes before taking him to the hospital.
The 4chan post explains:
“Pt transported to Lower Manhattan ER and worked for 20 minutes and called. Hospital administrator was alerted, preparing statements.”
The shorthand medical language suggests that a medic or hospital worker created the post. The information appears to be consistent with official reports. According to a statement later released by the Department of Justice’s Federal Bureau of Prisons,
“Staff requested emergency medical services (EMS) and life-saving efforts continued. Mr. Epstein was transported by EMS to a local hospital for treatment of life-threatening injuries, and subsequently pronounced dead by hospital staff.”
President Trump ignited conspiracy communities when he retweeted a conspiracy theory alleging the Clintons were involved in the Epstein case.
Since the suicide, Attorney General William Barr reassigned the warden of the New York City federal jail and placed the two guards scheduled to watch the prisoner on leave.