'Tiger King' Star Joe Exotic Calls Losing His Zoo to Carole Baskin "Another Emotional Blow"
With Exotic currently serving a 22-year prison sentence over a murder a plot to have Baskin killed, his management team has issued a statement on his behalf after the imprisoned Netflix star lost the zoo.
"It's with heavy hearts we must officially address the court ruling that transferred ownership of the G.W. Zoo to none other than Carol [sic] Baskin. Because of the amount of press the story has received, we feel a timely response is necessary," the statement reads.
"This ruling is yet another emotional blow to an already fragile Joe, who has spent the past 3 straight months in solitary confinement. He has been completely unable to defend himself.
"As hard as this news is, we refuse to accept defeat. Even as we type this message, Joe's legal team is filing appeals and his social media/PR team are rallying public support. "
The statement also makes note of the current unrest in America over the systemic racism that has plagued the country.
"There is so much sadness and injustice in the world. We believe strongly, as Joe does, that standing up for what is right is always worthwhile," the statement reads. " Our whole team prays for justice for George Floyd's family as well as an end to systemic racism in America."
Previously, however, Tiger King co-director Rebecca Chaiklin painted a troubling view of Exotic's worldview, telling The Hollywood Reporter, "Yes. Joe is a racist, I would say categorically. He said things when we were filming that were very unsettling." As such, the filmmakers edited out footage from the final documentary.
Originally called G.W. Zoo, the Oklahoma facility was more recently rebranded as Tiger King Park, with Exotic's business parter Jeff Lowe until now owning the zoo. Lowe was given 120 days to vacate the property, with Baskin awarded the zoo, the 16 acres it sits upon, its cabins, vehicles and more.
Baskin — the owner of Florida's Big Cat Rescue facility — was given control of Exotic's zoo after he failed to pay her $1 million USD in copyright and trademark suits dating back to 2013.
You can read Joe Exotic's full statement here.
"The ruling is yet another emotional blow to an already fragile Joe, who has spent the past 3 straight months in solitary confinement."— Joe Exotic (@joe_exotic) June 4, 2020
Joe has issued his official response to a Carole Baskin taking the zoo. He is suffering, help us end it. #helpfreejoe https://t.co/7K6CHyBaEP