In an exclusive interview with Daily Popit is Justin Sylvester, Rick kirkham—The seasoned reporter and producer who worked on Joe’s reality TV and was recently featured on Netflix Tiger king– Said that the docuseries “are extremely precise, but they did not go as far as possible. “
“There was much more to say; much more could have been shown on Joe Exotic and how wild, crazy and evil the man was, “said Kirkham, adding that a more accurate representation would be taking the documentary,” multiply it [and] put on steroids. “
As Kirkham explains in Tiger king, much of what he describes was originally captured by his own cameras. These images, however, were the victims of a random fire on Joe’s property – a fire that Kirkham believes Joe, whose legal name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, committed suicide.
“Joe wanted us to turn on the cameras 24 hours a day, and we did,” Kirkham told Sylvester. “We shot thousands of hours of things, and everything from him killing animals to mistreating people, mistreating animals – he knew it was all on tape. And he wanted it to be recorded. But he never wanted everything to be released. “
Investigators have never determined who started the fire, and Maldonado-Passage has denied any involvement.
The story, according to Kirkham, goes like this: “Before she left the park – he said,” Rick, roll your camera. Roll your camera. Come on, you’re going to love this Rick “- he approached, took out a pistol from his holster and shot the horse in the trailer, then cut it with a chainsaw and then gave it to the tigers today – the. “
PEOPLE recently reported on Kirkham’s story about the horse, noting that Maldonado-Passage had not been charged with any charges for the alleged shooting on horseback. His lawyer did not respond to PEOPLErequest for comments. Maldonado-Passage was convicted by the Federal Court of two counts of murder for hire, however, Carole baskin was unsuccessful – as well as a number of charges relating to the animals he held, including nine counts of violating the Endangered Species Law. Maldonado-Passage is currently serving a 22-year sentence, but continues to maintain his innocence over all charges and allegations of any type of abuse.
The story of the horse was apparently just one of the “hundred” crazy things Kirkham would have witnessed. He told Sylvester that he even feared for his life because of Joe’s alleged carelessness. Often, according to Kirkham, he would sneak up behind people and shoot them or the ground “just to scare them”.
“He would take out a pistol and shoot through the walls of the studio. I mean, he was just so crazy, “said Kirkham.
So when the fire happened, Kirkham said it was the last drop for him. He had originally made a deal with Joe that he would produce videos for his YouTube channel if Kirkham could film Joe for his own reality show, but now all those footage – worth a whole year – was gone.
Kirkham said that after his “million dollar reality TV” was destroyed, he had “a nervous breakdown” and left Oklahoma.
“There have been a lot of strange things going on in there,” said Sylvester Kirkham, who now lives in Norway. “It was really a difficult time in my life. I had to get psychiatric help after working in this zoo. And to this day, now that he’s returned with the docuseries, I see a therapist again. “
He explained that because of these strange things he would have witnessed while working with Joe, it couldn’t even be crazy that Netflix did a project like the one he originally wanted to do.
“I’m not at all upset. If anything, I’m grateful because, to be completely honest with you, about four months after I was there, I started to realize what was going on and see things that I didn’t know well. , ”Said Kirkham. “I started selling my own journalistic integrity by not stopping it. And I felt guilty. So when the zoo fire happened, I had all this guilt on me compared to what I had seen. “
He continued: “… It was not the loss of the project that overturned me, it was the fact that I had let myself go so far … So the karma came back for Joe and me. Karma comes back in that I couldn’t do my show. I lost everything I had. Karma came for him in that he is now in prison as the most famous man on the planet. ”
Fame, according to Kirkham, has always been Joe’s end goal.
“It’s the real irony here, it’s the fact that Joe Exotic, all he ever wanted in his life was to be famous; the most famous man in the world, “Kirkham told Sylvester. “Today he is, and he’s sitting behind bars. “
He added, “I bet he’s scratching the walls of his prison cell, knowing that he has now gotten all the fame he wanted and that he can’t do anything with it. “
Kirkham plans to reveal more about Joe Exotic and Tiger king live tomorrow, Saturday April 11, 2 p.m. ET. Viewers can submit questions to Kirkham by posting a video on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #AskTigerRick.