By Sandra Rose  | 

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Guards at the jail where serial sex offender Jeffrey Epstein committed suicide on Saturday failed to make mandatory checks on the inmates the night before. Epstein, 66, was found unresponsive in his cell in the Special Housing Unit at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Lower Manhattan at 6:30 a.m. Saturday.

The jail's Special Housing Unit is reserved for high-profile inmates in solitary confinement or inmates who are at risk to injure themselves or others.

Epstein, who faced life in prison for sex trafficking minors, was placed on suicide watch after a previous suicide attempt last month. He was not on suicide watch at the time of his death, NBC reports.

Guards who work on the Special Housing Unit are required to conduct "mandatory" checks on inmates in solitary confinement every 30 minutes, the Federal Bureau of Prisons said in a news release on Saturday.

"At the MCC, two jail guards are required to make separate checks on all prisoners every 30 minutes, but that procedure was not followed overnight," Reuters reported.

Epstein hanged himself in his cell sometime before guards found him in full cardiac arrest (no pulse, no respirations) at 6:30 a.m. Saturday.

The jail's medical staff performed CPR before Epstein was rushed by ambulance to New York-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

The New York Post reported a man who looked like Epstein was wheeled out of the jail and taken to the hospital at 7:30 a.m.

Photo by Rick Friedman/Rick Friedman Photography/Corbis via Getty Images