Two prison guards at the New York federal prison in charge of watching over sex offender Jeffrey Epstein when he died of suicide in August falsified logs showing they made checks that they never mad, according to a six count felony indictment released on Thursday. Right before Epstein was found dead the guards were surfing the internet and sleeping on the job, says the indictment. Tova Noel and Michael Thomas are both charged with counts of conspiracy and falsifying entries into official records. 

Epstein’s death has raised questions about his connections to important men in politics and business. Epstein’s brother hired a pathologist who found that fractures in Epstein’s neck were more common in homicides than suicides, which led to conspiracy theories. 

The FBI conducted its own investigation in which it reaffirmed that the death of Epstein was caused by self-inflicted injuries and not by a homicide. The federal agency also added that the suicide was facilitated by carelessness, overworking and possible exhaustion.

No cameras were on in Epstein’s cell or immediate area fueling conspiracy talk, however, the FBI has video of the guard station indicating a chronology of what the guards did and what they didn’t do. That video shows that the guards missed five jail-wide counts although all counts were marked as complete. Noel signed more than 75 entries that in actuality were never done. The prosecutors and grand jury stated that the guards for two hours sat at their desks without making any sudden movements, indicating that they were asleep. These guards were approximately 15 feet from Epstein’s cell. The guards searched on the internet for motorcycle sales, sports news, benefit websites and furniture sales. Noel could face 30 years in jail if found guilty of all charges and Thomas is facing up to 20 years in total.  


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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) came out implying that Epstein’s death is not as black and white as the FBI investigations paint it to be. 

“He died in federal custody before he had a chance to testify about his crimes, about his wrongdoings, and about the other powerful men who were complicit in that sexual abuse,” he said. “There were powerful men who wanted Jeffrey Epstein silenced.” 

Montell Figgins, Thomas’s lawyer, believes that the the two prison guards are being “scapegoated.” He argued that the investigations are trying to punish the “low man on the totem pole here.” 


Noel’s attorney says that their efforts is to reach an agreement with the government and prevent this case from going to trial.

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