He fell in love with Jeffrey Charles “JC” Hartpence in 1991, years before he was found guilty of his crimes.
Born Joe Schreibvogel, Exotic is currently serving 22 years in prison for paying a hitman to kill Carole Baskin and killing tigers to make room for more cats in his zoo.
When he met Hartpence, Joe was still mourning the death of her first husband, Brian Rhyne, who died of complications from HIV.
The relationship ended when Hartpence carried a gun to Joe’s head in drunken rage, New York Magazine reported.
Years after their separation, Hartpence was found guilty of “aggravated indecent liberty with a child under the age of 14” and entered in the sex offender registry.
He is currently serving a life sentence in a Kansas prison for the first degree criminal murder of Curtis Shelton, who was found dead at his home with several gunshot wounds in 2014.
Hartpence will not be eligible for parole until 2034.
After their separation, Joe started dating John Finley, who played Tiger King with him.
The couple then married Travis Maldonado in a marriage of three.
The series documenting the events that led to Joe’s imprisonment has become a huge success for Netflix.
Joe has now filed a lawsuit of $ 94 million (£ 76 million) because he claims to have been “unjustly” arrested and imprisoned.
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According to TMZ, Joe alleged that he was “discriminated against because he is the only accused of this law because [he] is an openly gay male with the largest collection of generic tigers and crosses. “
According to the lawsuit, Joe demanded $ 78,840,000 for the loss of his personal property.
In addition, he insisted on asking for an additional $ 15 million after accusing another former colleague of being an informer before saying that the death of his mother Shirley was the result of his imprisonment.