‘Tiger King’ star Jeff Johnson dead in apparent suicide

Jeffrey Lynn Johnson, who appeared in the hit Netflix docuseries, “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness,” has died at the age of 58.

The Oklahoma City Police Department told CNN that Johnson died of apparent suicide during an argument with his wife Charity.

The Reptile Merchant is interviewed on the fourth episode of Netflix.

The police report indicated that officers were called to Johnson’s home just after 10 p.m. on September 8 on charges of attempted suicide, CNN reported.

A charity told the authorities that her husband committed suicide in front of her while they were arguing in the garage. Their children, ages 4 and 5, were home at the time of the accident, according to CNN.

Johnson was rushed to hospital shortly after a pulse was found at the scene, according to a police report, but was pronounced dead in hospital. The report also noted that Johnson “has no history of mental health”.

“Tiger King” star Joe Exotic’s lawyer confirmed that he spoke to Charity following the tragedy.

Jeff Johnson
Johnson died at the age of 58 at his home in Oklahoma.
Courtesy of Netlix

Johnson’s death follows the death of fellow “Tiger King” star and park ranger Eric Coy. Coy was found dead on September 3 in New York City and the coroner determined that the cause of his death was “acute and chronic alcohol abuse” in a “normal” manner.

The second season of the popular series premiered on Netflix on November 17. The Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, is currently serving a prison sentence for paying a hitman for the murder of animal rights activist Carole Baskin.

The former park ranger, 58, spoke exclusively with The Post via a written letter he sent from prison, claiming that the show’s second season proves he is “innocent.” He also claimed that former President Donald Trump was an “idiot” for not pardoning him and that President Joe Biden should grant him clemency.

“President Trump was a fool not to pardon me,” Exotic wrote. “Before the election, millions of people were hoping for that because they know I’m innocent, and most of this is in TK2 [‘Tiger King 2’] And it will be the same for President Biden, the world will know the truth [when the new season is released] He and the Vice President [Kamala] Harris ran on justice and prison reform.”

Joseph "Joe Exotic" Maldonado Passage
Joe Exotic was sentenced to 22 years in prison for hiring a hitman to kill animal rights activist Carol Baskin.
Netflix US / AFP via Getty Images

“It would be in the interests of American justice if President Biden could pardon me before the holidays and charge perjury and other appropriate charges, or that injustice really cost votes in 2022 as people wonder if this could happen to them under his watch.”

The reality star continued, “For 3 years, the “government” kept me in isolation, blocked numbers and reporters from my phone, refused any email telling lawyers the truth, and prevented me from speaking to the press and monitoring every legal contact that contacted me.”


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