Joe Exotic’s time running his own private zoo in Oklahoma was eventful and controversial. If the gun-toting, mullet-haired, cowboy-dressing zookeeper looks familiar, it might be because he once featured in Louis Theroux’s documentary, America’s Most Dangerous Pets. Originally called Joe Schreibvogel, his full name is now Joe Maldonado-Passage. But he also calls himself Joe Exotic. The long-running saga surrounding his animal park and conflict with an animal rights activist he wanted dead is now being told in a Netflix true crime docuseries called Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness. Since his childhood growing up in Kansas, Joe was passionate about animals. It’s a passion he shared with his older brother Garold. After a brief time as a police officer he bought a pet store in 1986 with Garold and his first husband in Arlington, Texas. Tragedy struck in 1997 though when Garold was hit and killed by a drunk driver. Joe sold the shop for $70,000 and set up the Garold Wayne Exotic Animal Memorial Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma, using that and the $140,000 lawsuit awarded to the family as a result of Garold’s death. The park opened in 1999 complete with a shrine to Garold who Joe described as… Read full this story
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